I heard a great story from Pastor Rob Rod the other day.
It began with a woman at a crowded mall who had just sat down next to a gentleman about her age. She opened her newspaper and started to read.
A few moments later, she reached over to grab one of her Oreo cookies only to notice that one was already gone!
A little shocked, she thought, “The nerve of this man!” But she had chosen not to say anything.
A few moments later, she reached for another cookie, only to see her table-mate had just bitten into another one. He smiled and nodded at her as though there was some unspoken consent for this behavior.
At this point she’s furious, and can’t believe the calm domineer of this man who’s blatantly eating her cookies.
Finally, she reaches over to grab the last one but as she putts to the paper down to look, he’s got the last cookie in his hand. In seeing her reaching for the empty try, he breaks the cookie in half and offers the one side to her with a smile.
Before she could say anything he got up, said, “have a great day,” and walked away.
The woman, about to explode at the point, calls her sister to tell her the story of what just happened.
As she stands up to walk away and tell her sister the story, her unopened box of Oreo cookies falls off of her lap and onto the floor.
- Beware of your assumptions, they may lead you down the wrong path and waste a lot of your energy.
- Examining your assumptions, when something forces you to become aware of them, can often lead you to finding some ineffective thought patters you have.
- When you assume, you make a donkey out of u and me.
- Speak up! Most people are afraid of being embarrassed, so they stay silent. However, being thoughtful and speaking up can lead to powerful things. Seeing the generality and grace the gentleman showed in the story, I would have loved to have a whole network of people like that in my rolodex. Speaking up can do many things for you, to include preventing project failures, shed light on assumptions you had about what everyone else already knows, or doesn’t know, etc.
The world may not want your voice but it sure does need it!
(and you may be surprised at the times and places that you find the world actually DOES want your voice!)
A graduate of West Point Academy, Kevin served six years as an officer in the U.S. Army Field Artillery. He held a combat arms leadership role for his entire career, except one staff position, during which he obtained a Master’s Degree in Leadership and Management. He also served in Iraq during “Operation Iraqi Freedom.” Since the military, Kevin has worked for Honeywell as an earned-value analyst in the aerospace department, in Phoenix Arizona.
He started testing his leadership skills in the entrepreneurial world by starting several companies, to include a real estate company and a business mailing-address company. Kevin loves to serve people who have a yearning to create a better life for themselves and others. He is passionate about teaching people the importance of something that most take for granted: relationships.
Kevin lives in Phoenix with his wife and two daughters. Read and subscribe to Kevin’s Warrior Blog here.