This is going to be the first article in a brand new category called "Social Skills" added to my seemingly-random category list. This series is especially for you pick up people out there. In my time teaching, I always had a good feeling for who would be successful and who would not be, way before we ever went out.
The reason was that some people had blatantly bad social skills. Face it - if you can't interact with GUYS properly, you're starting with girls with a major handicap. So here we're going to talk about everything from e-mail to gift giving. What's first on our radar? Being late. Read on...
Some people are notoriously late for everything. I used to be one of those people myself. But over time it annoyed me when people were late so much that I put in the work and changed that habit. That's not to say that I'm ALWAYS on time. Sometimes it's better to be a little late, and sometimes there are unforseen circumstances. But make no mistake - everyone notices how timely everyone else is, and this can be used to your advantage. Here's a list of common situations, and how prompt to be for each.
There you have it - a complete guide to promptness and lack thereof. When in doubt, though, just be on time. If you are chronically late, you will almost certainly be less respected by those around you, so this is an important change to make. If you have that problem, then start off by leaving 15 minutes early for everything and being early for everything. Once you get a handle on that, you can start getting fancy by following my guidelines above.
I like the idea of showing up early to a party for preselection reasons. I find that being the first one in allows you to develop a relationship with the most amount of people. So by the end of the party, you have more people to converse with and you're getting more smiles from people.
Blondie girl here.
being late on a first that?oh oh ,that i dont like.it goes a long way to show disrespect.for me that wuld be the last date.cheers
Nothig worse then an IP being 30 minutes late, and then acting like its no big deal. "Oh dude.. im sorry, so, lets breif quick."
Business meeting with a partner: Being late is a genuinely bad practice. Like you observed early in the article, people pay attention to others' punctuality. When a colleague -- either a peer or a superior -- is consistently late, it's fantastically annoying and unprofessional. Where I work, I meet regularly one-on-one with my instructors, and I follow the idea that five minutes early == on time. Like your first bullet, when you're meeting with a superior, you want to be there earlier than he is as a show of respect.
But I'm there early so that when he's there on time, I'm not leaving him waiting. When my superior arrives late, it doesn't generate an atmosphere of dominance, it just annoys me. It outlines his lack of respect and makes me less eager to want to work with him in the future.
On movies: I remember when I was a kid, my dad used to absolutely insist we get to the theater like an hour early. literally. even for third-week showings. It wasn't until high school that I realized people did anything else. 17 minutes late, so that you sit down as the movie's actually starting -- that's right on the money, man.
In poker you often win not by playing your cards, but by playing your opponents cards. My good friend and sometimes poker mentor once told me that to become a winning poker player, you must learn to win the pots that no one has a legitimate claim to. If you have an excellent hand, you'll probably win. If he has an excellent hand, he'll probably win. But if neither of you has a particularly good hand, the pot is up for grabs. It's in situations like these that rather than playing your hand, you focus on your opponents weakness.
In real life, too, I find a lot of value in working from other people's weaknesses, especially societal weaknesses. As urbanization continues along with population growth, standing out from the crowd becomes more and more difficult. Even if you are exceptional, your impression can drown amongst the sea of other people everyone is meeting. The solution, or part of it anyway, is to identify what society at large is bad at, and excel at it. By doing so, you become even more distinct as the field increases.
Here are some examples of ways I try to distance myself from the crowd.
1. Always be on time. Being late has become the standard. I never expect anyone to show up to anything on time, and I'm usually not surprised. Most people won't be terribly late, but five or ten minutes of tardiness is the norm. For the past few months I've made a point of always being on time for everything. A week or two ago I was half an hour late making a phone call, and I still remember it today because it was such an egregious violation of this standard.
This site is for people who want to grow exponentially; to improve their ability to improve themselves. Is this even possible?
Here's an exponential curve:
Making one positive change makes it easier to make more positive changes in future. So at first glance, it looks as though your rate of growth should keep growing, and that exponential improvements are possible.
But clearly you can't grow exponentially forever. We don't encounter people who've reached a "productivity singularity" where they can complete their daily tasks in five minutes, and spend the rest of their time reading time-management books (while jogging on a treadmill) to become even more efficient.