You know what it’s like. Some people are so much fun to work with that you don’t want to stop. And others? Well . . . you wished that they worked somewhere else.

It’s great to be memorable, as long as it’s for the right reasons.

There are two groups of skills that will make people want to work with you: Professional skills and interpersonal skills.

We all know people who possess the most pleasant personalities, but can’t make bread in a bakery. And, of course, we know others who are the best thing since sliced bread, but who also happened to be the biggest jerks that ever walked on the planet. Either combination is sour dough for all concerned. You’re fooling yourself if you think that you can focus on one in the absence of the other.

There are three indispensable interpersonal skills that will make you memorable.

1.    Friendly. You’re pleasant to be around. You’re cool under pressure. You care about me as a person and an individual. Your focus is on our success, not just your own or the task at hand. You connect with me as a person and a human being.

2.    Cooperative. If your childhood report cards gave you high marks for playing well with others, then you’re headed in the right direction. Working well with others, providing your support, input and guidance when asked and proactively when you see the opportunity will set you (and others) up for success.

3.    Respectful. Far too many professionals get this one wrong. They think that there are too busy, too important, or both to “make nice.” And they have the entirely erroneous view that in order to demonstrate competence they have to maintain a reign of terror. We may not be best friends, but we do need to work respectfully together.

There are also three professional skills that will make you memorable.

1.    Expertise. No one wants to be around someone who is incompetent. It must be said, however, that everyone is incompetent for the first six months or so. Notwithstanding the idiosyncrasies involved in doing the job itself, you have to learn the organization’s policies, procedures, and mores. And much as you’d like it to be otherwise, you can’t pick up all those things by putting a funnel in your mouth, and then just pouring it in. It takes times to assimilate the nuances.

2.    Genuine. “Fake it until you make it” may be a clever book title, but it has no place in organizations today. If you don’t know what you’re doing, then what ever else you bring is just smoke and mirrors. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Asking for help, advice and guidance is OK. The sky won’t fall in, people won’t think less of you – in fact, people (the ones you want around anyway) want to help you. Success is a team sport (a fact often overlooked by many).  Easier and more fun to achieve when you have others around you.

3.    Judgment. Decision-making is one of the weakest skills that leaders and managers have. This is probably due in part to the deficiencies of the rational decision-making model. It overlooks that fact that people are nothing like as rational as they think they are. Those who are memorable for the right reasons know how to think through a problem, and then to make the best of a range of choices.

So what about you? Are people glad to have you in their organization, or would they prefer that you took a permanent vacation?

Take as much or as little time as you need to find out.