Is It Better to Be Pushy… or a Pushover?

Are you a pushy person?

Not sure? Take this test:

  • Do you find that your subordinates often work more slowly than you would like them to?

  • Do you worry that they do not entirely understand how to get the job done right?
  • At the start of a project, do you worry that they won’t make the deadline?
  • Do you find yourself thinking that it would be easier to do things yourself than to delegate them?

If you answered “yes” to three or four of these questions, you are almost certainly pushy. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Pushy people get things done.

Being pushy isn’t a choice, it’s part of your personality. And our personalities are pretty well imprinted by the time we are teenagers. Problem is, being pushy can interfere with your ability to interact with other people. By being aware of your natural inclination to be a bit of an autocrat, you can keep that from happening.

If you know that you have a tendency to be pushy, focus on being diplomatic, courteous, and fair. If, on the other hand, you know that you have a tendency to be a pushover, focus on asserting yourself and saying “no” to delegated tasks that don’t advance your career.

[Ed. Note: Mark Morgan Ford was the creator of Early To Rise. In 2011, Mark retired from ETR and now writes the Palm Beach Letter. His advice, in our opinion, continues to get better and better with every essay, particularly in the controversial ones we have shared today. We encourage you to read everything you can that has been written by Mark.]