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Posts tagged ‘Employer’

“The Better Question Changes Everything:” A Painter’s View

In Dan Rockwell’s above-titled blog, posted December 9, 2014, he advised leaders:

 

“Don’t allow people with clean hands to complain about people who are sweaty and dirty.”

 

Every professional painter understands the implication of any question, or comment, about his or her physical appearance, and hygiene, on the job.

 

On behalf of every professional painter everywhere that has gotten sweaty and/or dirty – and been asked or heard about it…

 

FIRST: Definitions of (1) an implied question, and (2) a better question to ask.

 

1. Implied question: What a question suggests or means, by the words, tone of voice, and/or look used.

2. Better question: The question that can be asked, and result in a better outcome.

 

SECOND: Some actual questions that I’ve been asked – one way or another:

 

Implied question: Why aren’t you clean like the rest of us?

Better question: You’ve had a busy day. Any problem that you need help with?

 

Implied question: Your hygiene: Don’t you use antiperspirant?

Better question: It’s been a hot, sweaty job. Thanks for your help. Would you like to cool off under a shower? A few others, including I, use the one in Room 120.

 

Implied question: Why can’t you keep your uniform spotless?

Better question: Thing they’ll ever figure out how to make stain-proof painter’s pants?

 

Implied question: How often do you change uniforms?

Better question: Has the order for your clean uniforms been put on hold again? Yes? Let me see what I can do about that.

 

Implied question: Gross! Why can’t you keep mold and bleach off your uniform?

Better question: What can we do to make this better? Any way we can help make this job easier and safer for you?

 

Implied question: Why does your uniform always look so damp and disgusting by this time every day?

Better question: Wouldn’t it be great to end a work day as fresh-looking as the office people?

 

Implied question: It’s embarrassing! Don’t you know how to keep yourself clean?

Better question: What might we try to make this part of your job less messy. You’re doing a tremendous job around here.

 

Implied question: Boy, do you know that you smell like paint?

Better question: That paint you’re using has an interesting odor, doesn’t it?

 

Implied question: Are you certain that you know what you’re doing?

Better question: Are there other ways to do that?

 

Implied question: Why does it look like that?

Better question: What will it look like when it’s finished?

 

Implied question: Won’t that make a big mess?

Better question: That’s a dirty job, isn’t it? Sorry you have to be the one to do it.

 

Implied question: Can’t you do that any faster?

Better question: That job looks like it’s going to take some time to do. Any idea how much more time you’ll need?

 

Implied question: Are you going to cover the furniture before you paint?

Better question: There sure is a lot to cover before you start to paint. Do you have enough plastic dropcloths, or old clean sheets?

 

Implied question: Why did you do it that way?

Better question: Is there more than one way to do that?

 

Implied question: You won’t leave the room in a mess, will you?

Better question: Would you leave the room as neat as you can when you’re finished?

 

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:

 

1. Timing is everything! Is this a better or worse time to ask this question?

 

2. Location! Location! Is this a better or worse place to ask this question?

 

3. The tendency is to ask that question now, before one forgets, gets distracted, and/or walks off.

 

4. Often, it pays to think a minute, beforehand, about what one wants to say? What point does one want or need to make?

 

5. Often, it pays to anticipate the other person’s reaction or response to one’s question, before one asks it. Does the question need to be phrased differently?

 

6. Too often, the question that one asks implies something very different from what is intended.

 

7. Too often, a question is asked before its implication or effect – versus intent – is considered.

 

8. Many persons don’t recognize the implications of what they have said, until it is too late. Words and actions are not erasable.

9. Sensitivity in the workplace has its place!

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Keep up the good work, everyone. And, thank you for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

Painting In: Company Policy, Common Sense and Common Courtesy: Part 1

Scenario:
A person – let’s say a painter – leaves his or her employment with a company.

 

Whatever the circumstance, it is standard company policy for any former employee to separate physically from the business, organization, people there, and property.

 

It is standard company policy that a former employee not return onto the property except:

 

  1. for a business reason that requires their physical return;
  2. for an occasional, brief visit – one to two times a year maximum;
  3. by invitation – eg. for a departmental party or cook-out;
  4. to “apply in person” for a job opening;
  5. for a job interview;
  6. to return – a rehire – to work there.

 

 

By the way, any and all returns should be cleared, in advance, with the hotel or facility general manager, or front office. That’s called “respect” or “common courtesy.”

 

It is common sense for a former employee to stay away from the business, organization and people. That gives everyone involved the time and space needed to:

 

  1. yes, mourn the departed employee’s loss;
  2. accept the person’s absence from the team, and the group; and
  3. adjust to the changes necessary because of the person’s departure from the organization.

 

It is common courtesy for a former employee to remain off the property, and away from the organization, except for any of the six reasons given above. This gives the replacement the best opportunity possible to assimilate into his or her new position.

 

He or she needs, and deserves, the opportunity to succeed. The replacement – new employee – has a job to do there.

 

  1. He or she needs to learn the ropes within the department, also interdepartmentally and organizationally.
  2. He or she needs to adjust and tweak his or her skills, abilities and resources to meet the unique needs of the new property – and employer.
  3. He or she needs to be welcomed properly by his new teammates and bosses.
  4. He or she needs to find his or her place on the team, and how to fit in!
  5. He or she needs to establish a reliable communication and negotiation system with his or her supervisor, other department directors, and managers.
  6. He or she needs to build teammate relationships and organizational friendships – at all levels – that are mutually beneficial, supportive and gratifying.
  7. He or she needs to find unique ways to contribute to the organization and the business.
  8. He or she needs to participate in and belong to the company family.

 

 

When a former employee stays off the property, and stays separated from the company, he or she benefits, too. He or she has the best opportunity to succeed autonomously.

 

  1. He or she can mourn the job loss, with the attention and respect it deserves.
  2. He or she can look back and gain a clear perspective of his or her total employment experience – and work life – there.
  3. He or she can reflect, objectively and subjectively, on past achievements, contributions and also unmet goals.
  4. He or she can rest in the present, and both assess and appreciate his current skills and abilities, accrued knowledge, creative talents, aspirations, and place in the world of employability.
  5. He or she can plan for the future. The person can create a plan that (a) respects that person’s work ethic and set of values; (b) offers opportunities for changes, growth and doing well; and (c) fulfills the greater need to feel like the person fits in and belongs, contributes, and can do more good.

 

When my grandfather retired from the ministry, he left a parish where he and my grandmother were totally respected, and deeply loved. In leaving, he announced to the consistory and congregation that he and Grandmother would be “staying away” from the church parish for one full year. Why?

 

“To give the new man a chance,” he explained to everyone concerned. (And, others that asked!)

 

Grandfather knew that it would be a major challenge for the successor to fill his pastoral shoes. He knew that it would be a bigger challenge for “the new man” to establish his own place – his own identity – in the church and in the community. To fit in and to belong!

 

Grandfather kept his pledge, and promise. Yes, he and Grandmother maintained their closest personal friendships with a few individuals and couples in the church. (They had retired there, their home community for over 25 years.)

 

Still, they refrained from having any communications and activities that may have, even indirectly, made “life uncomfortable and difficult for the new man.”

 

As a result, the new man sought Grandfather’s counsel on a regular basis. And, the two clergy became trusted friends, strong supporters of each other, and professional confidantes.

 

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POINTS TO PONDER:

1. Have you ever been a “former employee?” Did you follow standard company policy after your departure?

2. Did you exercise common sense about your former employer, teammates/coworkers, and organization – and their circumstance?

3. Did you practice common courtesy toward your former teammates/coworkers, former managers, and former employer, as well as your replacement?

4. Have you ever been working where and when a former employee showed up repeatedly on the property?  For years? How did you handle the situation each time?

5. How well was the company policy, including security rules, followed by all current employees and managers, including you? By the former employee? By the business owners?

 

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“In the long haul, it pays to follow company policy, exercise common sense, and practice common courtesy – and help others do the same.”

Thank you for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

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