Every time I hear that phrase, I think of Thomas the Train. Can't you just hear Sir Toppum Hat? "Thomas, you are such a useful engine."
Weird that I'm thinking about this today. I was on a conference call earlier this week and each of the managers in our group picked one person on their team to recognize. One of the managers read a quote from someone in their market that works with the person they had chosen. The phrase that he read was that this person was "...a Joy to work with."
Ultimately, there were other folks with similar accolades and it really got me thinking. What is it that ellicits this sort of response? I was not the person chosen on my team and it caused me to really think about why. Not because I deserve it, but because I'm curious about what I could be doing differently. Although there are certainly areas of my job where I accel, my hope is that my partners and clients think of me as someone who is great to work with.
Does this mean better follow-up? More communication? A more positive attitude? Certainly, these are things that I'll be considering.