Finding a group of peers with whom you can truly talk and be yourself is tough in business. You want to ensure that the people you surround yourself with will truly have your back though good times and bad. These 10 behaviors of genuine people can help you determine if someone is trying to take advantage of you--or if the person is a real friend.
1. They place meaning over money.
Genuine people have a firm understanding that money is not a measure of anyone's worth but rather is a tool meant to help people pursue their dreams.
2. They value themselves.
Don't think that the first trait of genuine people means you can get away with cutting them out of a deal. Genuine people truly care about others because they truly care about themselves. So while a genuine person is willing to struggle financially with you for the greater good, that person is also going to insist on being part of the boon he or she helped create.
3. They have great intuition.
Intuition is simply a recognition of patterns, and genuine people have learned to dodge the pitfalls of phoniness by observing how others behave. This practice allows them to have a finely tuned understanding of what choices are good and not so good.
4. They diffuse drama--or avoid it altogether.
Genuine people tend to have higher self-confidence because they put their energy into their heart's desires. Since most drama stems from a lack of self-worth, genuine people don't play a big part in the theatrics.
5. They take responsibility for their mistakes.
The blame game isn't fun for honest folks because they know it doesn't solve any underlying issues. Trustworthy people take responsibility for themselves because they don't want to repeat their mistakes. Instead, they enjoy exploring how they can do better.
6. They're always learning.
This love of learning extends to what's happening in the outside world as well. Genuine people are always reading, studying, or having experiences that help them grow and stretch their understanding of life and those around them.
7. They have little tolerance for fakery in others.
If you know someone who is willing to teeter on the edge of insubordination to help you stay true to yourself, keep him or her as part of your tribe. Genuine people won't always tell you what you want to hear--but they'll definitely tell you what you need to hear.
8. They're courageous.
This is not the kind of courage that's in-your-face. Genuine people won't necessarily be the first to volunteer at the bungee-jump platform for instance--but they'll be there for you if the rope breaks.
9. They talk an inordinate amount about their kids and pets.
This is because genuine people like to surround themselves with their own kind.
10. They laugh every day.
Genuine people have as many bad days as their less-than-sincere brethren. Yet they also have a deep-seated happiness that comes from staying true to themselves. This happiness tends to escape from them in the form of yucking it up with friends, co-workers, and anybody else who wants to join in the joy.
Figuring out if someone has a majority of these traits can take time, but it's well worth the effort. The loyalty and enthusiasm that genuine people bring to the table helps foster an atmosphere of caring and creativity that simply can't be bought. As Anuj Somany points out: "The best way to judge the worth of a person's wealth is to count the number of genuine people he has got in his network."