The Civilized Minute

a minute of manners and musings

the fair fight

Yep, the house of etiquette does quarrel.  Though, not often … thank goodness! 

You see, Mr. Man operates very differently than I do.  He is deliberate and methodical and VERY scheduled.  I, well, am not.  But I am more creative.  Mr. Man’s business runs like a well-oiled machine.  Meanwhile, mine runs in my office when the kids and the dog aren’t underfoot (and sometimes when they are.)  It runs in the car.  It has even been known to run in the Kroger parking lot.  And parts of it run while I’m on the treadmill. 

Neither is perfect, mind you. But the bottom line is that both get the job done. 

The question to ask yourself is this:  who are we to judge HOW people do what they do?  Does it really matter to us?  I put my pants on left leg first.  Is it wrong to not go with the right leg first?  No, it’s just different.  I hear this argument alluded to during my training.  The question usually goes something like "how can I get him/her to do it my way?" but not in these words, of course. 

What I can tell you is that diversity and acceptance is the name of the game if you want to reap the benefits of a successful career.  You must be willing to accept differences of opinion and approach when it comes to your co-workers or it is impossible to develop the relationships necessary to succeed.

However, there are times when you simply must debate an issue. That’s when it’s time to remember these key points. Let them guide you in the pursuit of a “fair” fight.

· Humility is key. Put the other person in a position to be the “hero” by presenting your request as a favor.

· Watch that tone. Sarcasm & yelling are never appropriate in a professional setting.

· Accept the outcome graciously. Respect their decision just as you would want others to respect yours

And every once in a while … try on someone else’s way of doing things. The experience will open you to new ways of thinking.

There’s a tree, out in the back yard, that never has been broken by the wind.
And the reason it’s still standing: It was strong enough to bend”

                                                             Tanya Tucker



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