Common Courtesy—Not So Common

dreamstime_xs_87916289, resized_edited-1I’m beginning to believe that common courtesy is an oxymoron.  Courtesy is not so common anymore.

You do not hear the little courtesies (please, thank you, you’re welcome, excuse me) as frequently as in the past.  You also hear more obviously discourteous behaviors (yelling, screaming, interrupting).

I think part of this is related to television.  Think about the lack of common courtesy in many of the TV shows; think about how people are treating each other.  Even in many of the news programs, it’s not about a civilized discussion, it’s about who can outshout the others.  When people watch this enough, they begin to think that this is appropriate behavior.

I think part of the lack of courtesy is related to social media.  It’s easy to slam people and their views when you don’t have to do it to their face.

I think another part is related to parents who don’t teach their children manners.  Too many parents let their children do whatever they want.  Children need to be taught what is acceptable behavior, and this means teaching boundaries.  It also means that when children display negative behavior, there is a negative consequence to their negative behavior.  If the child is allowed to continue with the negative behavior, it reinforces that the negative behavior is acceptable.

I think the root of lack of courtesy is lack of respect.  Too many people do not respect other people.  They do not respect that other people have the same rights they do.  They do not respect that other people have the same right to their views and beliefs.  They do not respect that other people deserve to be treated the same way they want to be treated.  And too often children are not taught to treat others with respect, both directly and by example.

I know this is not an easy issue to solve.  But if each of us try to treat the people around us with courtesy and respect, it will at least make our little piece of the world a little better.  And who knows?  Maybe it will spread!

The 3 R’s of Assertiveness

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This is a very condensed presentation on assertiveness.  The title is The 3 R’s of Assertiveness.  (An alternative title is Don’t Act Like Prey!)  The 3 R’s are relationships, rights, and respect.

We all have professional and personal relationships.  Within each of these relationship we and the other party have certain rights.  When we do not respect ourselves and our rights, we are passive.  When we do not respect others and their rights, we are aggressive.  When we respect both ourselves and others, we are assertive.

I published this presentation previous in a series of five segments.  If you did not have an opportunity to watch the segments, I hope you will learn something in this one that will help you achieve the success you want.

Stealing Stuff

hStealing Stuff (Video)

This blog provides additional information to the attached video clip.  The clip is from an assertiveness presentation I did for The Business Building Academy.

In my presentation on assertiveness, Don’t Act Like Prey!, I discuss the three R’s of assertiveness:  relationship, rights, and respect.  In this presentation I used the customer/supplier relationship as an example and we discussed the rights of each party.  In this clip, we are discussing the rights of the supplier.  One right of the supplier is that the customer will not steal her stuff.

I never would have thought of that until this story happened to me.

Assertiveness (5), The Finish of the Story

The attached video is an excerpt from a very condensed presentation on assertiveness.  The title of the presentation is The 3 R’s of Assertiveness.  (An alternative title is Don’t Act Like Prey!.) 

Part 5 finishes the story started in the first segment.  It includes important points to remember when you are in a situation where you know the best thing is to be assertive.

This is the final segment of the condensed assertiveness presentation.  I hope you have learned at least one or two items that you want to implement to improve your success.

Assertiveness (4), Respect and Metaphors

The attached video is an excerpt from a very condensed presentation on assertiveness.  The title of the presentation is The 3 R’s of Assertiveness.  (An alternative title is Don’t Act Like Prey!.) 

Part 4, Respect, discusses the importance of respecting ourselves and our rights.  When we do not, we are passive.  It also discusses the importance of respecting others and their rights.  When we do not, we are aggressive.  By respecting ourselves and others, and acting accordingly, we are assertive.

It also discusses using wildlife metaphors for describing passive, aggressive, and assertive behavior.

Each week I will post the next section of the presentation.  Last week was on rights.  Next week will be the final, the finish of the story stared in section 1.

Under-promise and Over-deliver

Scotty (Video)

Do you remember Scotty from the original Star Trek series?  Scotty developed the reputation of a miracle-worker.  His secret was that he consistently under-promised and over-delivered.  (Alright, he was also exceptional at what he did.)  Captain Kirk would ask him how long it would take to fix something.  “Three days, Cap’n.”  “We only have three hours!” And Scotty would fix it in three hours (or whatever the time frame happened to be).

We can all learn a lesson from Scotty.  This blog provides additional information to the attached video clip.  The clip is from an assertiveness presentation I did for The Business Building Academy.

In my presentation on assertiveness, Don’t Act Like Prey!, I discuss the three R’s of assertiveness: relationships, rights, and respect.  In this presentation, I used the customer/supplier relationship as an example and we discussed the rights of each party.  In this clip, we are discussing that the customer has the right to expect what is promised and how the supplier can use Scotty from Star Trek to help make sure that the promises are kept.

It is imperative that promises are kept.  And it is acceptable to build a buffer for yourself because things do happen.  For example, if you promise a customer something in one week, and deliver in two weeks, the customer will be upset because you were a week late.  If you promise it in three weeks, and deliver it in two, the customer will be thrilled because you are early.  In each case the customer has it in two weeks.  In the first example, though, you look horrible.  In the second, you are a hero.  Which will help your business more?

This concept can be used in your personal life as well as your professional life.  Do you under-promise and over-deliver?

 

Dress to Connect

Dress to Connect (Video)h

There is always information about how to dress for different situations.  Some of us spend a great deal of time thinking about how we should dress for professional and personal situations.

One aspect I try to consider when I dress is to dress to connect.  What will help me connect with the people around me?

I realized the importance of this many years ago when I was working as a consultant dietitian for a long-term care company.  When I went into one of the company’s nursing homes it was usually to evaluate the operation of the food service department.  To do this I had to be in the kitchen and in the dining rooms.  If I was going to be able to do my job well, I had to be comfortable.  I also needed to look professional to gain credibility.  I dressed in slacks, a shirt or sweater, flats with a decent sole so I didn’t slip, and a lab coat.

Many of the consultant nurses I worked with had a different opinion.  They dressed in short, tight skirts and high heels.  I thought that was rather foolish; how can you work dressed like that?  An aspect that I did not consider until I overheard some of the staff nurses talking was that the facility nurses did not respect the consultant nurses simply because of the way they dressed.  The consultants did not look like they wanted to actually help, they looked like they just wanted to sit behind a desk and tell others what to do.  It was very difficult for the consultants to get the facility nurses to even listen to what needed to be done.

Additionally, these consultant nurses (not all the nurses I worked with were like this) liked to wear jewelry; big, expensive jewelry.  The facility nurses took this as the consultants were showing off how much more money they made.  It caused resentment, which further eroded the credibility of these consultants.  It never would have occurred to me that staff might feel resentment over what jewelry someone else wore, but I can see it now.

I think a good rule of thumb is to dress a level or two above those you will be working with to look professional and gain credibility, but not so far above that you lose respect.

The 3 R’s of Assertiveness

SF_DontActLikePrey_F1.inddA simple method to consistently be assertive (not passive or aggressive) is to use the 3 R’s.  Relationships, Rights, Respect.

We are all involved in professional and personal relationships.

Within each of these relationships, we and the other person have certain rights.

It is necessary that we treat ourselves and others, our rights and their rights, with respect.

For more information, and tools to assist you in becoming assertive more consistently, please see my book, Don’t Act Like Prey!  You can order it through my website, http://www.susanlfarrell.com/Section/Shop/index.html.  If you leave me your email address, I will send you a special bonus chapter.

If this is a topic that would benefit your organization, association, or group, please contact me for speaking availability.  Additional information is available at http://www.susanlfarrell.com/Section/Event_Planners/index.html.

Thank you!

Be Tolerant

Be Tolerant (Video)

It is easy to get frustrated with other people.  They do not always think the way we do or do things the way we would.

First, that does not mean that they are wrong.  Rarely is there any one best way.  What we do works for us.  We can hope that what they do is working for them without hurting anyone else.

Second, maybe they are learning and trying something that is new to them.  There is a learning curve.  Someday they may be as good as, or better than, you.

As long as the other person is not doing you any harm, be tolerant.