What's in a word?

What does the word nice mean to you? 

How many successful people got to where they are by being nice do you think?

I get described as a nice person a lot but will that trait help me progress at work? When I think about my working persona, will being a lovely person, make sure I meet my performance rating and get awarded full bonus for the year?

I've had a problem with the word ever since I was at primary school.  Whenever a pupil used 'nice' to describe something they were told by Mrs McGill, year 3, under no uncertain terms to 'try again with a proper word, a word which actually means something!'

During a team building exercise a few years ago we were asked to write down a word to describe each other. At the end of the exercise out of 5 written words, 4 said I was nice. Was that all I was to them? What about fun, knowledgeable, helpful, wise, thoughtful? No, I got bloody nice, four bloody times!

How was being nice in life going to help me succeed? How many people have been nice in their life only for a not so nice person to take advantage of that? So although I know I am nice person am I destined to not progress?

So it was wonderful to watch The Apprentice on Sunday and see a nice person actually win. Not someone who was back stabbing or manipulative. Not someone who was loud or arrogant or rude.

Tom came across throughout the series as a thoroughly decent nice and lovely man (maybe a little eccentric, mind!) His good manners and cheerful disposition shone through. Although a little quirky in places, his little flashes of brilliance twinkled and weren't clouded by bad manners. He was described throughout as 'nice and lovely' and someone said they thought he wouldn't last! His success in part I felt was because he was nice and not in spite of it.
'Nice' does not mean 'weak'.  by @inspirationguy
So thank you Tom for inspiring me to think I can succeed in anything I want, and still be a nice person in the process.


  1. I love this post! All too often, people think that being nice and being successful are mutually exclusive.

    The fact is that being nice is an essential component of success. If anyone needs evidence for this, they should read Dale Carnegie's "How to Win Friends and Influence People", or Guy Kawasaki's latest book "Enchantment".

    I was delighted to see Tom win the Apprentice - he's carrying the flag for successful nice people all over Britain!

  2. Super post. I hated it when I worked in management and was always told I was nice - as a criticism. I had always seen it as a good thing.
    Don't like nice biscuits though - false advertising I say!

  3. I love it, I am also described as nice, although I beg to differ but yes Nice people can do just as well as those who are cuthroat. What goes aorund comes around! Mich x