Archive for February 22nd, 2010

My Mom used to say: “You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.” I am pretty sure my brothers and I were thinking that we had no interest in flies either way! As I got older I obviously understood what my Mom was trying to convey.

The vinegar way could be restated as: how to lose friends and alienate people. Or, how to lose good workers and alienate the one’s who may have to stay. Or, how to lose privileges and alienate parents. Conversely the honey way may look something like: “how to get more productivity out of your employees” or “how to get what you want out of your parents.”

The below thoughts can apply to the work place as well as the home. How can you get more loyalty and productivity out of your employees? How can you get more of what you want out of your parents? It’s your lucky day, I am about to tell you!

Whether it is the work situation or the home front something is present that should not be there, and something is missing that needs to be there. In both cases the thing that should not be there is the sense of entitlement. Again, in both cases the thing that should be there that is missing is respect.

In the workplace: increased entitlement equals decreased productivity. Decreased respect equals decreased morale. Both of those can lead to apathy and a high turn over rate. When an employer feels entitled to exact their “pound of flesh” from their employees and treats them more than minions than the most valuable asset their company has — the end result is much less productivity. On the other hand, in an environment where people feel that they are more valuable than how sharp their nose is at the old grindstone, loyalty and productivity increase.

In the home: increased entitlement equals decreased connectivity. Decreased respect equals increased friction and decreased privileges. Any of you who are parents think of it this way. The more children treat you like maids, cooks, chauffeurs — likely the less you would be motivated to facilitate their demands.

What is the remedy in both situations? Gratitude! Gratitude is the opposite of entitlement. Gratitude is the opposite of complacency. Gratitude greases the wheels of requests. Gratitude can determine altitude. Or once again, more simply stated: “you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.” See Mom? I was listening!


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