I had an interesting conversation at the start of this week about the importance of how you treat people. Not just being polite and respectful to the people who cross paths with you during life but more crucial those you work with.
There are times when we all have disagreements at work with colleagues, managers or others. We spend a lot of time working closely with people and it is inevitable that this won’t always be harmonious. But it is how we deal with those disputes that is the most important thing. Will we let those disagreements affect how we work with people on a daily basis? Do we need to leave and find another place to work?
The most enlightened workplaces are those where people can have differences of opinion but ensure that it does not impact on work and their enjoyment of work. Staff can be mature and when they disagree they deal with it and move on. Human nature doesn’t always help this as we want to be right and have our position supported. Being able to accept another view and leave it is a huge step forward for most people.
When people come to the point of leaving an organisation or employer they often want to use it as an opportunity to air all their grievances. It doesn’t matter whether these were from years ago or last week they see it as a chance to ‘get even’. In fact this is hugely damaging for them. I totally support constructive feedback to organisations when you may be moving on. But the key in that is being constructive.
What often happens is people see it as settling scores and a chance to be rude. This leaves them empty but also shows a lack of foresight. The world is increasingly a small place where our paths cross with people many times. You never know who you will be rude to and then need to do business with in the future. I have had this a few times in my past and I remember the sage words of my parents and I always walk away and leave on good terms. Above all it is treating people with respect and having good manners, not to be ignored in any era.