Nice guys (and girls) finish last? Really? I disagree



Maybe it seems that way when you’re young.  and, I’ll concede that maybe nice guys might finish “last” in a short term sprint…but in the long run…in my opinion, nice guys cross the line 1st in the long Marathon of Life!

My youngest child, Emma, just graduated high school.  Besides being super smart, passionate and hardworking:  Emma Is Nice!  She might be the nicest person I have ever known.  Because of this, Emma is a collector of friends.  True friends.  Not the shallow “friendships” that tend to occur during middle and high school.

Emma is a kind young lady.  The first thing into her mind is not criticism…or judgement.  It is typically acceptance for who someone is, and interest in them.  In her most recent world, of young people trying to be popular…and belong to popular groups…it is easy for teens to leave true friends behind, for who or what they perceive to be a better situation for them, or another rung up in the ladder of popularity.  Typically, this creates hurt feelings, rifts, stress, tears and worse.

If you navigate life with interest in people, acceptance of who they are, a keen ability to listen…and simply being nice and respectful…generally speaking, you too will be a collector of friends.  By no means do I recommend being a punching bag or pushover.  Sometimes you have to draw the line, walk away from friendships, stick up for yourself and protect your own persona and reputation.  But, over time, if you are known for being nice…you will be happier and more enriched.  It’s nice having financial security…but in my estimation, those with a collection of true friends are the wealthiest people.

Having witnessed my 18-year-old daughter’s journey through what can only be termed as the 7 most stressful social years of young peoples’ lives:  I have seen her gather friends from many grade levels, cultures and social groups.  Humans love being engaged respectfully…they love being respected…they feel special when other are nice to them.  Emma could run a master class!


In parting, some questions I have for you Mr. Manager, Miss General Manager, Mrs. Owner: 

  • How nice are you?
  • Do you collect people?


Customers and clients are your lifeblood! 

  • Do they think you’re nice?
  • Do they feel included?
  • Do they think you’re interested in them?


If so…you win!


  • Make it easy for people to do and keep doing business with you!
  • Look up…and surprise someone!

Spencer Rubin is a sales/marketing expert and a passionate advocate for the success of small, local business owners. To sign up for Spencer’s weekly Catalyst Newsletter, contact 971-732-4745.

“Don’t give up, don’t EVER give up” ~Coach Jim Valvano