All things TOEFL iBT

Read the text below about the what it takes to being successful:

That’s right. The whole “nice guys finish last” thing is dead wrong. Organizations are far more effective when people are nice to each other. Nice wins.

Now, anyone who knows me has got to be cracking up right about now because, like I said, I’m not a very nice person. But lately, I’ve been advising some friends on their career strategy. One woman, a friend of my wife’s, is so smart, open, and downright nice, I don’t think she has a clue what a pleasure she is to work with. I’d do anything for her. That’s just how nice she is.

Mind you, I’ve helped loads of friends and associates get jobs, and while I’m sure they’re appreciative, some of them just aren’t that nice about it. Years ago I hooked up one guy with a company I used to work for that was looking for a CEO. He got the job, the company went public, and he made a bundle. I don’t think he ever thanked me.

But my wife’s friend is so not like that. In fact, she’s been at one company for so long that she really wasn’t up on how competitive the job market has become and how sophisticated and cut-throat job seekers are these days. And it occurred to me that, once she gets to a live human being, she’s got a real competitive advantage. As I told her, “Just be yourself, be genuine, be nice, and people will respond in kind. Things will work out fine for you.”

How do I know that if I’m such a jerk? Well, when I want something, I can be really, really nice. And it comes across as genuine because I genuinely really, really want that thing and, if I have to be nice to get it, then I’ll be as nice as I have to be. And you know what? Nine times out of ten, it works. That’s because people are suckers for nice. Here’s why:

First of all, it’s human nature. I mean, if somebody’s staring you right in the face, they really need your help, and they seem really nice, you’d have to be some kind of antisocial creep not to help them. And while email and phones aren’t quite as personal, again, once you’ve made some sort of personal appeal or connection and you’re nice and transparent about it, most people will help if they can.

Lastly, people have a natural tendency to personalize everything, especially things with emotional content. We just imagine ourselves in the other person’s position, the shoe being on the other foot, as it were, and we react the way we’d want them to react to us. Deep down, that’s actually an egocentric or selfish tendency, but in this case, it actually comes across as a nice gesture. Whatever works, right?

The moral of the story is both simple and powerful. I don’t care if you’re an administrative assistant or a CEO, an engineer or a salesperson, in HR or in IT. No man or woman is an island. Organizations are matrices of teams and stakeholders. And they’re far more effective at getting things done when people help each other and are nice to each other.

Taken from the article printed here


Now watch the video in which the presenter describes eight secrets to success:


How do the ideas in the text contrast with those presented in the video?

Which of the tips presented in your view is the most efficient?


Comments on: "Integrated Writing task – Success" (3)

  1. Thais Rosa said:

    For me the most efficient kind of tip is focus in something, because when you know what to do, you have the idea to work hard, persist to be good and push yourself in something that you have passion ,


    The reading says that be a nice person leads people to success. As explained, organizations are more effective when workers are kind with each other. For the author, nice people have an advantage comparing to others because the society will respond them in kind, so things will work fine for them. However, the Listening points eight features that leads people to prosperity, they are: passion, do things for love and money comes anyway; hard work because nothing comes easily and have fun with it; be really good at doing what you chosen to do; focus on one thing; push yourself; serve, is a privilege to be a professional and to help; ideas, be curious, listen, observe and persist your failure, criticism, rejection and pressure.
    I believe that the Listening is right. Efforts are necessary to be a professional of success and it involves hard work, persist, and other characteristics as said by the presenter. For me, be nice with people is also needed to work more effectively, but this behavior won’t be enough to lead a person to the top.

  3. The article states that “being nice” creates a comfortable environment where people can succeed and be more productive by providing real life examples in different organizations where “being nice” led to success.
    The article says that people like to work with nice people and tend to help nice people more in their work, they also have “a tendency to personalize everything” that is why being nice can lead to a more productive work environment which helps everyone to reach their goals.
    However, the lecture points out that there are more ways to be successful providing real life examples and reasons of support. It points out that being successful can be pursued if only a person has values as being passionate, which means loving what they do, working hard, concentrating on one thing that they are good at and persistent .
    The lecture also adds that in order for a person to be successful they will have to be able to serve others in order to serve themselves, as well as, having ideas.
    In my opinion, I do agree with the lecture because being successful determines more than support from people, it determines persistence and passion and a lot of other values that makes a person stand out in a group and enjoy success and prosperity.

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