R-E-S-P-E-C-

Yep.  There’s no T. The workplace is short on respect.

Most of us have jobs, toiling the majority of our lives away, until hopefully we reach retirement age; and, with dual purposes, have earned and saved enough money to live, raise a family, send children to college, and retire. All on a paycheck.

Considering that the typical worker will toil 8 hours a day from age 24 to age 65, a full one-third of our lives for over 40 years, how important is it that, within these places of workship, the workers, leaders, colleagues, subordinates – should show each other respect?

Since I am leaving my current job none too soon, my sister sent me an email saying, “I hope the next place works better with your personality. The last five were problems”. HA!  After I laughed, I disagreed.  And tried to outline why the last few (let’s just say ‘few’…it’s unnecessary to be so specific!) jobs went bust.  After trying to define how my unhappiness was someone else’s fault…I settled on the fact that there were core issues of respect at each and every company.

The commonality is, of course, me…but I don’t have a problem.  umm.

Well, let me ask you…
Is it okay that one owner stood between me and the door as I was leaving at 5:00pm?

Is it okay that someone said “I didn’t get any sleep last night. I’m not in the mood” and then got up and slammed his office door in my face?

Is it okay to be asked “Do I have to spoon feed you everything?”

Have you ever been asked to “ just fucking speak ENGLISH?”
Or
“Engaged! You haven’t been ENGAGED yet!  What DOES THAT MEAN?  I mean, I know what that means, but WHAT does that mean?!”

Of course, being the common denominator in all these situations could mean that I’m a blithering idiot speaking Tagalog while eating pureed green beans …but I’m not.

It is us – the poor hourly wagers, the cogs and peons who, having taken the brunt of rudeness so long, think this is normal workplace behavior.

It isn’t.  Or at least, it shouldn’t be.

We need a grassroots movement to reintroduce professionalism and respect back into the workplace.  And here are some suggested ground rules.

  1. Use your words.  Don’t cuss in meetings.
  2. Use your indoor voice. Yelling doesn’t make you right.
  3. If you didn’t get enough sleep to be civil, don’t show up at the office.
  4. Stop looking for someone to blame.
  5. Stop taking credit where credit isn’t due.
  6. Don’t use that finger.
  7. Having an office with a door doesn’t make you right.
  8. Own up.

Repeat our mantra whenever faced with bitterness or malice: I refuse to make excuses for colleagues, managers, or myself.  I refuse to give respect, but not expect it. And above all, I refuse to tolerate bad behavior at any level.

And if you don’t get it…well…get a new job.
You deserve nothing less.

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One thought on “R-E-S-P-E-C-

Add yours

  1. So true! I’ve witnessed this behavior far too many times. Being a contractor again after five years as an FTE, I now find myself at the bottom of a murky pond–no opinion, no voice, no respect–with my only workspace a two-foot long area of counterspace in someone else’s cube. My back to an open thoroughfare through the building, there is no privacy or anonymity. My point? My reason for commenting is just to say that I relate and empathize. I don’t want to be recognized the same as someone who’s been with this company for 20 years; I just want basic human respect–and, in my opinion, the “basics” don’t always have to be earned.

    By the way, I like your off-balance quilted ba-gua image. It goes so perfectly next to the missing letter. So subtle, yet very profound. You are geniously sneaky and I love it.

    Like

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