Thanks for sharing your story, Garrett. I think it's human nature--the guy who is friendly, likable, and schmoozy (which I'm defining here as someone who makes an effort to get to know other people) is always easier to work with than the serious, uptight "weird" guy who is a bit socially awkward.
I think that's what my dad didn't realize, coming from a culture that revered test scores almost to the exclusion of other factors. Here in the U.S., we are encouraged to connect with others, get to know our colleagues, offer to help, and be a team player. I doubt my dad did any of that.