It’s no secret that being a good person pays off in the long run. Kind and honest people often reap the benefits of being respected, trusted, and even liked by others. It makes sense because having good character instills trust in others, and makes it easier to build strong relationships both at work and outside of work. When you are a high-character person, people want to be around you and work with you because they feel good when they are in your presence.
What is character of a person?
A character generally refers to the moral or ethical quality of an individual. In the workplace, a character is how you behave or conduct yourself as a person. Your character determines your attitude towards others and every task that comes your way. Most importantly, your character is about the choices you make both at work and outside of work.
What is a good character?
In general, showing integrity, respecting others and yourself, not discriminating, including others in decision-making, demonstrating empathy and compassion, being accountable are some of the behaviors that define a good character.
Why showing a good character at work is important?
Overall, showing good character at work helps you to be more successful, but above all, it can set the best examples for others in the workplace to emulate. It can also build trust and respect among coworkers which are vital when working in a team.
Furthermore, exhibiting good character can make it easier to maintain a positive reputation both inside and outside of the workplace.
While there are many reasons to show good character at work, the most important one is probably the simplest: it’s the right thing to do.
How do you show good character?
There are many ways to do it, but one way to show good character is by exemplifying it in your professional life. Here are 13 examples of good character in the workplace:
1. Keeping your promises
Examples of good character include when you keep your promises – it shows that you are reliable and can be counted on to follow through on your commitments.
It builds trust with your colleagues and others, which is essential for teamwork and successful collaborations.
Second, keeping your promises demonstrates integrity and honesty. When you make a promise, you’re essentially committing to behave in a certain way. And keeping that promise shows that you’re someone who upholds their word.
Finally, keeping promises is just the right thing to do. It’s unfair to make pledges you can’t hold on to, so live up to your commitments. This is the ethical thing to do and sets a good example for others.
2. Making rational choices
A rational choice is a decision you make after carefully considering facts or weighing all the possible options and their potential implications.
It is a choice that reflects your good character and commitment to do what is right, even when it’s not easy.
Making a rational choice shows that you’re capable of thinking things through and taking the time to make a thoughtful decision.
When you make choices that reflect your principles, it shows that you’re someone with good morals.
After all, it takes a lot of discipline and integrity to stay true to your beliefs and values, even when you’re under pressure.
Making rational choices also shows that you have self-control because it’s often easier to make the wrong decision when emotions are running high or if you are under pressure.
Everyone knows what it means to listen to their intuition, but truly rational people know how important it is to control their impulses.
3. Giving credit where it is due
Giving credit where it is due at work means acknowledging the role others played in achieving your or shared goal. It is a way of showing gratitude and loyalty to the other person and their efforts for all that they do.
When someone takes credit for work that was not their own, it can be frustrating and demoralizing to those who did the work.
When you give credit to another person, you are acknowledging that their ideas, work, or effort were instrumental in completing a project or task.
It is a sign of respect, appreciation, and understanding that all people in a team are responsible for how well it performs.
It demonstrates that you are willing to put the team first than chasing personal glory. It also makes it easier for others to trust and work with you since they can be confident that you will give them the credit they deserve when things go well.
And finally, it helps build relationships by showing that you value others and are willing to cooperate with them.
Overall, giving others credit is a simple way to make everyone on your team feel good about their contributions.
4. Listening when someone is speaking
Listening attentively when someone is speaking shows that you are interested in what the other person is saying and respect them.
On other hand, interrupting someone when they speak might show that you are not interested or not paying attention to what they are saying. It can be rude and disrespectful.
If you need to interject, wait until the other person has finished speaking and then politely speak. It shows your good character to listen and understand the other person.
It also demonstrates that you care about the other person and their opinion.
5. Respecting yourself and others
Respect for other people has two components: self-respect and respect for others. Self-respect means believing that you are worthy of love, happiness, success, and all other good things life has to offer.
When you believe in yourself, it carries over into your interactions with others, making you a happier and more positive person.
Respect for others means treating them the way you want to be treated, giving them the benefit of the doubt, being honest with them even when it is difficult or painful, and supporting their freedom to make choices in their lives.
Those are all things that people who respect themselves appreciate in their daily interactions with others at work and outside of work.
Treating others with respect doesn’t mean that you become a pushover or letting people walk all over you, it just means that you treat everyone fairly and don’t discriminate against anyone for any reason.
6. Taking responsibility for your actions
Actions speak louder than words, and when you back your claims and promises with actual deeds, it shows that you’re a person of integrity. People with a good character often admit their mistakes and learn from them.
Taking responsibility for your actions, whether good or bad, demonstrates your integrity and moral compass. It shows that you are accountable and can be counted on to do the right thing, even when no one is watching.
Read more: 30 Examples of Showing Respect
7. Asking questions when you don’t understand
Sometimes it feels like people judging you or that you’re not smart enough when you ask them questions. Many people pretend to understand something when they don’t, but this can backfire when you ask them for details.
It’s always better, to be honest, and admit that you don’t know something than trying to bluff your way through it.
When you accept that you don’t know something, you demonstrate courage and the capacity to learn. In other words, you show honesty, humility, and wisdom.
Don’t be afraid of asking even dumb questions if you don’t understand something because everyone was once a beginner at some point.
It’s a part of the learning process, and it will make you smarter and better-informed. And who knows? You may even teach your colleagues or someone something in the process!
8. Receiving constructive criticism with an open mind
We all like to receive praise for our ideas because it makes us feel good. But receiving constructive criticism is essential to any professional.
It shows that you want to learn and grow. It also demonstrates good character, which is necessary if you want to be a leader someday.
Some people don’t like to take criticism. Regardless of how you react to constructive criticism, don’t feel offended or insecure when you receive constructive criticism if you want to grow and evolve professionally.
9. Giving people the benefit of the doubt
When it comes to our personal and professional relationships, we should always give people the benefit of the doubt. A person with good character will not begrudging another person for making a mistake.
They understand that each person is unique and has their strengths and weaknesses. And while they may not always agree with someone’s choices, they will always give them the benefit of the doubt to focus on their own mistakes and learn from them instead of holding grudges.
That attitude fosters a sense that everyone deserves a second chance and helps create space for productive conversations and collaboration among people who might previously have felt suspicious or hostile towards one another.
10. Being helpful
People with strong moral values always resist being selfish or greedy. So, they act selflessly and generously. They want others, including strangers to experience happiness and success.
That is why they often go out of their way to help others — even those who have nothing to offer in return.
By helping others without expecting anything in return, a person with good character boosts other people’s self-esteem and makes them feel better about themselves.
11. Having the capacity to forgive
Strong moral character is not about feeling superior to others. It’s about having strong principles and acting upon them.
You do not have to feel anger toward those who make mistakes because you understand that every one of us makes mistakes.
So, do not judge others for making mistakes, because everyone does it. What you should be doing is to forgive and help them people their behavior so that they can self-correct.
People with high character understand that even if we hold others accountable for their actions, the only person who can change another is themselves.
Read more: 13 Examples of Self-Management
12. Understanding & appreciating the value of rules
Moral people understand that there must be limitations to freedom — otherwise, chaos reigns, and no good thing can ever come out of it — because we’re all fallible human beings with limited knowledge and understanding.
We do not and cannot know everything. And to allow everyone the freedom to do whatever they like whenever they like will only hurt others.
In society, moral people understand that there must be laws and rules – if everyone could just go around doing whatever they liked, it would cause chaos.
Similarly, in the workplace, many understand that for everyone to do their work, there must be a structure where roles are defined, and everyone accepts their position in the team or company to function.
But there are always a few people who break the rule no matter what. They refuse to accept different opinions, ignore the rules everyone else plays by, generally become arrogant, and eventually become isolated.
13. Being quick to apologize when you’re wrong
A quick apology shows that you have a sense of responsibility and maturity to admit your mistakes.
It shows that you are honest, humble, and not afraid to admit when you are wrong. It also means that you care about other people and are not arrogant or self-righteous.
People who are quick to apologize realize that relationships are more important than ego or pride, and they’re always willing to put the needs of others first.
Quickly saying “I’m sorry” when you do something wrong goes a long way in maintaining relationships with friends or work colleagues.
It also makes you a bigger person and builds your character every time you apologize for something small or big.
Showing a good character is a life lesson for everyone, especially for people in positions of leadership and authority. We make choices that either support or undermine our reputation with the people who matter most: ourselves.
We can show others what we do and don’t stand for by living consistently with our values, even when it’s difficult.
We must be willing to take responsibility not only for our actions but also for how those actions are perceived by others- because “a person’s reputation is their self-portrait.”
When you live up to your values in everything that you do (big or small), you create a positive impression in the minds of those around you. Showing good character is vital for the way others perceive us and how we perceive ourselves.
We may not always be able to control the things that happen to us, but we can always choose how we react, and by making good decisions, we can make the workplace better today than it was yesterday.
How would you describe a good character? Leave your thoughts in the comment box below