Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Now kids, listen to your mother.

Sometimes we assume that only the "professionals" can educate us. People like my mother, for example. She makes her living by helping people correct their behavior and refocus their energy to yield success. (Look, Ma, I said that without sounding like a smart ass.) And while I will begrudgingly agree that she has valid points, I maintain that everything we need to know about work and business can be boiled down to a few things she taught me as a child. Meaning her degrees are useless and she should've just kept yelling at everyone like she did to me when I was a snot nosed brat. I kid, Ma. I kid. Mostly.

Believe me, I'm the first person to ignore any advice my mother gives me. And I'm the first person to tease her at length about what she does for a living. So, consider this a rare and unlikely occurrence. I'm going to talk about how my mother is right.

By the way, if you just head a loud thud it was my mother falling out of her chair. Someone should probably check on her to make sure she's still breathing.

Is she still alive? Breathing? Heart still beating? Okay, good. Let's continue on with discussing how my mother is right and occasionally people should listen to her.

1. When you are inside you must use your inside voice.

I firmly believe that the majority of the world has forgotten this simple rule. Especially when it comes to being in an office. Park rangers are an exception and I'm sure there are a few others, but most people work in a building. In case you're confused, buildings are inside places. That means it is not appropriate to walk into the office and start talking at the top of your lungs. Especially around my desk. Please, lower your voices and remember that there are other people around you.

2. Do not touch things that don't belong to you.

Apparently no one else learned this rule as a child. Maybe my mother was extra strict. Or maybe people now view offices as communes and believe everything is shared. This includes pens, staplers, food, chairs and computers. Listen. Back off. I don't bring things to work for you to play with. The food in the fridge isn't an option in case you don't like your lunch. Would you go to your neighbors and eat their supper because you didn't like what you cooked? No.

3. When you go to church/work/school it is important to look your best.

I know some people might not agree with me on this one, but I firmly believe it. I don't expect people to buy designer labels and spend three hours in the morning primping. However, I do expect people to take some level of pride in their appearance. Shower, for example. Brush your hair. And do not walk around my office in the same clothing you would wear to a club. Have some respect for your place of employment. Have some dignity for that matter. And pull your shirt down/pants up because no body wants to see that!

4. Be nice to others.

Now this one is a big one. And also the hardest for the average employee to follow. I'm astounded that people question the amount of turnover they have when they are rude, dismissive and disrespectful to their employees. Can we take a moment to saying DUH? If you want someone to help you with something then be nice to them. If you want me to continue to do the work that you should be doing in the first place then try treating me like a person rather than Drone no. 7. And that goes for your co-workers as well. We are all in a tight space together and it's very likely that you work with people that you would not spend time out in the real world. Well too bad. Be nice to them. It's just that simple.

I spend five days a week watching things from my lobby. I see every part of this office work together, argue, complain, etc. And if everyone would just take my mother's advice which is the SAME ADVICE your mother probably gave you when you were growing up. Not that I normally condone listening to my mother, but in this instance I think we'd all be better off.


Erin said...

Holy CRAP, I am about ready to murder my students over #2. They think everything on my desk is fair game. They grab pens, stamps, move my remotes around, just touch everything. Yet if I take away a cell phone, you better believe they'd flip out if I went through text messages or anything of the sort!

Leanne said...

Thanks Kate for the rare acknowledgment. I am still breathing, somewhat heavy after recovering from falling off the chair. By the way, well written and very well done from one writer to another. P.S. Parents sometimes it is good to listen to your children.

Julie Vision Designs said...

OMG there is so much truth here. BUT, can I just say I'm stuck on "(Look, Ma, I said that without sounding like a smart ass.)" STILL GIGGLING.

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