Head and heart

At various times throughout the year I will create a “game” or challenge for myself to either have a little fun or help me keep things in perspective or both!
You all may remember some of my past games: try something new each day, intentionally introduce myself to someone each day, cook something new each weekend for a month, count to 10 and breathe several times before answering anything that will impact another person, and so on.

My most recent “game” has been to stop and mentally/emotionally put myself in the other persons shoes, before or while talking with them. In doing this, I find myself asking some of the following questions:

  • If I am the person that works in the dishroom, what am I thinking when my DM is doing an audit?
  • If I am the Director or Manager, how do I feel when my DM gives me feedback?
  • If I am speaking to my DM, and she interjects with her thoughts before I am finished, how do I feel?
  • If I am the cook who has worked very hard on the meal and some of it really just doesn’t taste right, how am I going to hear what my DM says when she talks to me about it?

None of these questions should stop me from doing what I need to do – which is give feedback and often discuss difficult situations or circumstances.
But, what this “game” does is help me…in the midst of my whirlwind…stop and think about some of the following:

  • What is my tone and do I need to change it?
  • What is my intention and have I gotten it across in a positive way?
  • Brutally honest feedback is good, but not if it’s given in a hurtful way
  • Have I really listened and heard what the other person is trying to say?

I could go on and you could help add to the list.
Yes, we have a business to run and need to strive to be the very best. But, what we do we do through people. People make our business. And how our people feel is equally as important as the information being discussed. We are people who Love Food, People, Serving Others.

During the busyness of spring, join me in my “game” and let’s all stop and think about understanding and helping each other.

Written By Marta Ruggles, District Manager

April 12, 2013

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