Tuesday, October 26, 2010

You're so beautifully tall...now sit down!

It never ceases to amaze me how important the delivery of a request or question impacts the response. How many times have you asked your significant other for something and it did NOT turn out the way you expected? Or seen people get into an argument over what initially seemed like a reasonable request? Regardless of how the situation turned out, it is YOUR FAULT if you are the one making the request.

That's right! Buck up and take responsibility. If you are trying to say something and the receiving party doesn't hear or understand what you tried to communicate, you did it wrong. In a class for leaders in the California Society of CPAs the instructor, Bill Reeb, made a statement that went to the core of all the participants. "WHATEVER happens in your life, you are responsible for it." was all he said. When you embrace this level of responsibility in your life, believe it or not, things change. You view the world differently. (of course there are some limitations to this, but, arguably, not many)

Recently, watching the final game of the MLB NLCS Giants vs. Phillies, I met a woman who executed this approach beautifully. In a crowded bar, some friends and I were sitting down cheering on the Giants. My girlfriend Shanna got up for something and stopped next to me before leaving the table. After a little while, the woman behind us commented to my better half, "excuse me," she said. "You know, you are so beautifully tall." Immediately, Shanna realized that she had been blocking the view of the people behind us and felt terrible. "Oh, I'm so sorry I'm in your way!" Shanna replied and quickly moved on out of the way.

We've all heard the other ways that woman could have made her point. "You know, you make a better door than a window!" "Hey, we're trying to watch the game too ya know...." The list goes on. The grace and tact our barroom neighbor exhibited by offering a compliment to make her point was stunning. Who wouldn't want to be obliging to someone who just made you feel good about yourself? I can't begin to guess the potential impact of taking this example into other requests you make throughout your week, but I aim to find out!

You're such a smart reader for having found this posting! Would you mind taking a brief moment and sharing it with a friend? :>)
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