It’s become a reality-show catchphrase: “I’m not here to make friends.” The implication is that to win, you can’t afford to treat people generously.
Will you go further by being cutthroat or collaborative? Let’s look at the data:
• If you’re looking for a job, you’re better off with friends. The No. 1 way people find new jobs is referrals by friends.
• Once you have a job, having a best friend at work helps you succeed. According to a Gallup Organization study, 56% of the people who say they have a best friend at work are engaged, productive and successful.
• The more same-sex friends you had in high school, the higher your salary. A University of Chicago study revealed that for every person who listed you as a close high school friend, you’re likely to have a 2% higher salary.
• People who say they’re not here to make friends don’t win. That’s true for reality TV. It’s true for business. And it’s true for life.
—Adapted from "Why Friends Matter at Work and in Life," Peter Bregman, Harvard Business Review Blog.