Five things

There have been several threads of people being tagged to talk about 5 things most people don’t know about them. It’s been a great way to add richness to the people that we only know in how ever many dimensions there are in digital space.

I started wondering, however, about five things you may not know about the next person you meet on the sidewalk, or talk with at the counter, or deal with on the phone. Remembering these five things may be significant, too.

1. You don’t know how tight their shoes are. That grimace on their face as you walk to the counter? That may have nothing to do with you but may be related to something as trivial as tight shoes. Before you react to their bad attitude, back off.

2. You don’t know whether they get their meaning from their job. Thanks to mission statements and our own internal motivation, many managers are pretty sure that everyone that works for them desires to gain his or her significance, purpose, fulfillment and meaning from the job. However, there are still some people who just have jobs. Their significance comes from somewhere else. They may not be unmotivated, they just aren’t motivated by THIS. To work well with those people, accept that they are being productive and save your motivational speeches for those who have no life outside of work. (Did I really just say that? Yep).

3. You don’t know how sick their parents are (or children or children they don’t have or….). We figure that people are sad because they don’t like us, that they are distracted because they don’t care. Everyone is capable of having one of those days and everyone is capable of amazing feats of work while dealing with horrible stuff. Gather more data before you assume.

4. You don’t know how sensitive to pain they are. Some people slap backs. Some people have sensitive backs. The latter don’t advertise. The former don’t stop. Advertise…and stop.

5. You don’t know how capable of delight they are. Almost everyone, with patience and encouragement, has some way of expressing delight about something, about caring about something. If you have the time, take the time to figure it out. The reward of the gentle smile is invaluable.

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2 responses to “Five things

  1. Thank you for a truly beautiful post…content both true, and beautifully written.

  2. These are great things to remember. Thanks for reminding us with your words.