Forget the old saying that “nice guys finish last;” there’s no rule that says you need to be ruthless to make money in the workplace. While a job on Wall Street or the corporate world may demand cold-blooded cunning, there are plenty of careers where being kind is a top job qualification.
Aside from excellent medical training, taking care of a vulnerable patient facing a health issue requires patience, good listening skills and compassion. The best health care professionals have an abundance of kindness in their bedside manner, but the medical field isn’t the only healing profession in which kindness is an asset. The ability to be kind is a benefit in any career that works to heal the body and mind, including mental health professionals, massage therapists, veterinarians, dieticians, physical therapists and EMTs.
Whether you’re teaching the alphabet to preschoolers or chemistry to college students, demonstrating kindness helps teachers to develop student rapport and to manage classrooms. Outside the traditional K-12 and college classrooms, learners benefit from the kindness of instructors who serve as tutors and workshop leaders. Those with a desire to kindly teach subjects other than reading, writing and arithmetic can educate youngsters and adults alike in any number of subjects, such as music, sports, fine arts, creative writing, and by teaching private lessons or becoming coaches.
Everyone from policemen and firefighters to waiters and cashiers, can exhibit kindness by serving by others with a smile. The service industry offers a broad spectrum of job opportunities that incorporates a wide range of skills and interests. Civil servants such as policemen, firefighters and social workers show kindness while rescuing victims. Commercial service positions benefit from exhibiting kindness when handling customers, whether you’re a realtor selling a house or a computer technician helping a consumer understand new technology.
Kindness doesn’t have to be reserved for people; there are plenty of opportunities for caring individuals who have a passion for saving the planet. Scientifically minded individuals who want to show kindness can steer their careers toward solutions and inventions that promote conservation. Lovers of the outdoors can consider positions that preserve nature, such as working for the National Park Service.
Perhaps no job provides more opportunities to show kindness than a position at a nonprofit organization. Charities exist to help and support a wide range of social issues, including at-risk children, disaster relief, medical research and victim abuse. Working for a charitable organization in any capacity shows kindness because it supports the efforts and accomplishments of the charity, whether you’re in the field helping victims or in the office crunching numbers.
A former art instructor, high school counselor and party planner, Christine Bartsch writes fashion, travel, interior design, education and entertainment content. Bartsch earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in communications/psychology/fine arts from Wisconsin Lutheran College and a creative writing Master of Fine Arts from Spalding University. She's written scripts for film/television productions and worked as the senior writer at a video game company.