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Kak

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This was a great article for me. I don't make a habit of bombing business relationships, but I sure want to sometimes.

People will let you down. That is fact. How you deal with it separates the leaders from the hotheads.

I voice my displeasure with Warren Buffet often, but this is sage advice.

 

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GigMistress

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Years ago, a friend who had been fired (not for the first time) called and asked me how I would have handled the situation that led to her termination and ended with something like, "But everyone is different. There's nothing magical about my approach," and she said, "Well, I think there must be, because you're just as stubborn and opinionated as I am, but you never get fired."

The epiphany point for her in that conversation was when she described what her boss had said and her (admittedly ill-advised) response and then followed it up with "But I couldn't just let her insult me."

I said, "Sure you can. You don't have to care enough about her opinion of you to get sidetracked into an argument."

LONG moment of silence. That had simply never occurred to her. Then, I suggested to her that with the worst of "opponents," declining to engage in the conflict was a bit of a superpower, since that type of person doesn't know how to change gears and ends up looking like an idiot ranting alone while you remain cool and professional and keep calmly circling back to the point. That was about 15 years ago, and she's changed jobs a few times since, but always on her own terms.

I suspect Buffet's point has more of an element of human kindness in it than what I've described here, but it is worth noting that restraint can also be a powerful weapon.
 
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Kak

Kak

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I'm sorry @Kak, I didn't mean to derail your train. You were sharing something of value indeed. And thank you @BizyDad for articulating things way better than me.
Meh. It happens to all of us. Just ironic that it happened in a "bite your tongue" thread.

RDD could have had some tact.

You and GigMistress could have told him to go to hell tomorrow. :rofl:
 

Imgal

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This is really sage advice. The one thing that has destroyed relationships in business and my personal life is not being emotionally mature enough to breathe instead of immediately reacting.

It's also important to realise that doesn't always mean exploding with anger in the moment. It's been just as damaging when you don't take the time to pause and reflect instead of immediately taking offense / beginning the snowballing effect of holding a grudge. I've ruined far more relationships by allowing my negative feelings about someone build and build.
 

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My friend had the same issue. That is why I made the suggestion to her that restraint could be a weapon. If you can internalize the feeling that you ARE fighting back and ARE gaining the upper hand in the discussion by remaining calm and professional, it may alleviate that. It did for her.

Of course, ideally you will reach a point where you are actually not reacting emotionally to people whose opinions you have no reason to give credence to, but until then, perhaps you could try staring placidly at the other person while thinking, "Ha! F you! You have no idea that I'm in control here and you're making an a$$ of yourself while I give nothing back."
Not to be sexist, but let's call it the way it is - that's a skill women seem to be particularly good at. Let's call it what it is - passive confrontation and control. Or, so they think, anyway.

Be careful with this. Several times I have just pulled the plug on good relationships because of the other parties refusal to work things out. It didn't start out bad, but they seemed to enjoy holding back their participation, mistakenly thinking there were in control - very much like you describe - except I did not look like an idiot in the process. Sometimes, to make progress, a push is required to get results. If everyone was intelligent and mature, there would be no need for managers - but that's not the case.

That technique works for a while. Until it doesn't. Then, to their surprise, I broke the stalemate and just gave up. Game over. They win if that makes them happy. The point is - they didn't win - and neither did I. But they stood their ground - for a while, anyway.

The older (more experienced) I get the less tolerance I have for egos and games. Somewhere along the way, I came to realize that I am trading a day of my life today for whatever happens today - and that has dramatically changed my opinion of people that want to play games and/or waste time.

I'm much happier, much more productive, and much more successful, now because I play the game to win - without going into overtime. Win - move on - and yes, it is possible for everyone to be happy in the process. Yet I still encounter the game players. Two days ago some clown told me he only had five more minutes to talk to me because his lunch was coming up. I immediately said to have a good lunch and brought the conversation to a very fast close - no sale for him - no future contact allowed either. He doesn't DESERVE my business. Ah - it's so nice not having to reach to make things work like I used to do. I will meet someone 75% of the way - and if that's not good enough - goodbye.

I don't insult people, nor do I get into a pissing match. But I do require that things move forward. I just thought you would like to hear "the other side of the story" that your friend might have not considered. To her, she was being attacked. I doubt it was that at all. If and when she takes the stance to over-deliver, she will gladly be receiving praise. Every business needs and every manager wants, good people to work with, whether they are workers or customers. Make it so.
 

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The relationships I have with some of my favorite clients started out with me wanting to tell them to kick rocks. Sometimes my job is to muck through the bs until we get to the gold...
 

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Great advice. I have a variation of this I do.

Just this morning I was going to send a "go to hell" type email. The guy deserves it. I got the words out to move on with my day... aaaaaaaand I saved it to my drafts.

I'll give it thought, maybe I'll send it Monday. Maybe I'll rewrite it. Maybe I'll forgive the guy for being a self sabotaging idiot who makes my job harder. Maybe I'll use this moment to up my rate on him, since he creates more work for me.

I don't have to decide today. The Monday version of me will probably handle it much much better, faster, more efficiently.

And the Friday version of me has been a lot happier and more productive than if I had actually sent that email and instigated the fight.

The write it down and save it for later tactic has definitely helped me since I implemented it 2 years ago.

I'm thinking some people maybe missed the whole point of the original post...
 

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LONG moment of silence. That had simply never occurred to her. Then, I suggested to her that with the worst of "opponents," declining to engage in the conflict was a bit of a superpower, since that type of person doesn't know how to change gears and ends up looking like an idiot ranting alone while you remain cool and professional and keep calmly circling back to the point. That was about 15 years ago, and she's changed jobs a few times since, but always on her own terms.
This 100 times over! When you put it into action, it is a GLORIOUS moment as they have nowhere to go with their ranting. The speed at which it extinguishes them and can often lead to them respecting you a whole lot more (and not quite knowing why) will try blow you away.
 
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Kak

Kak

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The older (more experienced) I get the less tolerance I have for egos and games. Somewhere along the way, I came to realize that I am trading a day of my life today for whatever happens today - and that has dramatically changed my opinion of people that want to play games and/or waste time.

I'm much happier, much more productive, and much more successful, now because I play the game to win - without going into overtime. Win - move on - and yes, it is possible for everyone to be happy in the process. Yet I still encounter the game players. Two days ago some clown told me he only had five more minutes to talk to me because his lunch was coming up. I immediately said to have a good lunch and brought the conversation to a very fast close - no sale for him - no future contact allowed either. He doesn't DESERVE my business. Ah - it's so nice not having to reach to make things work like I used to do. I will meet someone 75% of the way - and if that's not good enough - goodbye.

I don't insult people, nor do I get into a pissing match. But I do require that things move forward. I just thought you would like to hear "the other side of the story" that your friend might have not considered. To her, she was being attacked. I doubt it was that at all. If and when she takes the stance to over-deliver, she will gladly be receiving praise. Every business needs and every manager wants, good people to work with, whether they are workers or customers. Make it so.
Agreed the game playing is horrendous. I love to just be as straightforward and have as much candor as possible.

I just wish for once I could just send this email:

"I have something you guys use. We have a good price and it will be worth your while to see if we can improve your bottom line. Let's discuss.

Regards,

Kak"

@MJ DeMarco I nominate RDD for a featured post.
 
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GigMistress

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Not to be sexist, but let's call it the way it is - that's a skill women seem to be particularly good at. Let's call it what it is - passive confrontation and control. Or, so they think, anyway.
It seems that your sexist assumptions have caused you to entirely misinterpret everything I've said. I'll try again in response to your various comments below, but as a starting point I would like to say that throughout my 30+ year career I have consistently been told by colleagues of both sexes, employers, friends and family that I "don't think like a woman" and that the reason I don't experience a lot of the gender bias many women complain of is that I have a "male brain," whatever the hell that means. So, pros or cons of what I've said aside, it's extremely unlikely that it has anything whatsoever to do with my vagina.

Be careful with this. Several times I have just pulled the plug on good relationships because of the other parties refusal to work things out. It didn't start out bad, but they seemed to enjoy holding back their participation, mistakenly thinking there were in control - very much like you describe - except I did not look like an idiot in the process. Sometimes, to make progress, a push is required to get results. If everyone was intelligent and mature, there would be no need for managers - but that's not the case.
There's so much wrong with this short paragraph I barely know where to start, but I'll go with the assertion that your second sentence is entirely false, since what you describe is in no way a "good relationship."

Second, the power game you describe here is NOTHING like what I described. What I suggested was refraining from engaging in ranting, shouting, name-calling, finger-pointing, etc and consistently redirecting the conversation to the point at hand. In short, to WORKING THINGS OUT instead of getting caught up in someone else's drama.

That technique works for a while. Until it doesn't. Then, to their surprise, I broke the stalemate and just gave up. Game over. They win if that makes them happy. The point is - they didn't win - and neither did I. But they stood their ground - for a while, anyway.

The older (more experienced) I get the less tolerance I have for egos and games. Somewhere along the way, I came to realize that I am trading a day of my life today for whatever happens today - and that has dramatically changed my opinion of people that want to play games and/or waste time.
It's funny that you say this, while consistently speaking in terms of the "game" and "winning." I personally don't enter into a conversation to win, and I find it's rarely productive to engage with someone who is focused on winning the conversation.

The person playing power games is the one wasting time and energy. I simply opt not to waste my time and energy alongside them, and to stay entirely focused on the issue that needs to be solved. If you find that offensive, consider it game, or see it as a strategy that will ultimately backfire, that raises serious concerns for me.

It's worth noting that I am 53 years old, have had success in multiple fields, and have never once had an experience in which remaining steadfastly calm and focused on the issue "backfired." If it did, I would likely conclude that the person with whom I was attempting to communicate was either mentally ill or 11 and so not someone I should be engaged in business with.

I'm much happier, much more productive, and much more successful, now because I play the game to win - without going into overtime. Win - move on - and yes, it is possible for everyone to be happy in the process. Yet I still encounter the game players. Two days ago some clown told me he only had five more minutes to talk to me because his lunch was coming up. I immediately said to have a good lunch and brought the conversation to a very fast close - no sale for him - no future contact allowed either. He doesn't DESERVE my business. Ah - it's so nice not having to reach to make things work like I used to do. I will meet someone 75% of the way - and if that's not good enough - goodbye.
And I'm much happier, more productive and more successful having opted out of playing games at all and not seeing my interactions with other humans as something to win.

Your story here is funny to me, because you're saying "no game players" while proudly describing how you played a game that to me appears childish and pointless. If you get something out of that, go for it. But, that doesn't mean that people who choose to engage rationally and without the need to "win"are doing something wrong.

I don't insult people, nor do I get into a pissing match.
I strongly suspect that people you engage with would say otherwise--your assumptions here are very insulting and your descriptions of how you seize power in small situations that don't matter at all could serve as illustrations of what "pissing match" means.

But, again, to each his own. You want to win. I want to solve problems. Different approaches for different goals.
 

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This was, actually, one of the biggest tips I took from reading "How to Win Friends and Influence People"

Quote from the book itself:

"Don't criticize, condemn, or complain. Human nature does not like to admit fault. When people are criticized or humiliated, they rarely respond well and will often become defensive and resent their critic. To handle people well, we must never criticize, condemn or complain because it will never result in the behavior we desire. "
 

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Ok, I tried to take the high road. And I gave it a day...

My Dad has a saying. "Don't listen to the man who says he has women figured out. That man is a liar." :rofl: We have a good laugh anytime he says it.

Not to be sexist but, how many females stopped reading at "Not to be sexist, but"? And how many males read on? :jawdrop: :rofl: :innocent: :halo:
I stopped reading. I only went back to read it because Kak praised it.

I do the same thing if someone says "Not to be racist" or "Honestly, here's what I think..." These are clues that some shady stuff is probably about to be said.

It is one thing to confidently point out a difference between the sexes. It is another to label your own post sexist and then prove that it is.

One starts a conversation of equals. The other, of adversaries.

There is a lesson to be learned in this thread, and the man trying hardest to teach it should do a better job learning it.

Not to be ageist, but let's see if we can teach an old dog a new trick, shall we? :rofl:

Or, maybe they have a formed opinion about differences between men and women. No harm, no foul. Get over it. It's not a bad thing.
Let's agree to tell it like it is, ok?

It actually can be a bad thing. And harmful. And foul.

How?

"It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so."

I never knew how vehement the WOMEN here could get - I mean, PEOPLE - over a mere observation.
You didn't know? Ok. Maybe you've been living under a rock. Or maybe you just ignore it when it happens.

But have you tried to listen to the feedback? Because you didn't share an observation. You said we were telling it like it is.

And what if your opinions about women are wrong?

For example:

I think we can all agree though, that is a more common trait in men, than women.
Hmmm... Really? Well...

Ask any kindergarten teacher how many assertive girls are in the class, and how many assertive boys. Plenty of young minds try to lead, regardless of gender.

And yet, in the era you grew up in, the men became assertive leaders. So you and many many others think assertiveness is a male trait. I used to think so too.

Until I had kids. My girl is a born leader. My son? Way laid back. He is learning to assert himself.

And in their classes I saw first hand plenty of assertive little girls.

So what happens to all the assertive girls?

Seriously, stop for a second and ask yourself this question....



What happens to all the assertive little girls?










Well, we know they don't get to be president, in this country.

But look around the world today. You don't have to go to Joan of Arc or movies for strong female leadership examples. Women have led countries for centuries.

What if it isn't a male trait? What if you start to see the younger women in your life as super capable assertive leaders and start to mentor them as such? Would that change anything in your world? Would that change anything in theirs?

Maybe you do mentor young women. Maybe you secretly coach a field hockey team. I don't know.

I'm guessing not though, because your comments in this thread make you sound like somebody that's a little hard to work with and someone who doesn't accept feedback well. You've got a "my way or the highway" kind of vibe to you.

So I'm not saying don't generalise. Our brains are wired to generalise. I'm saying don't get it wrong.

And since we all make mistakes, I'm saying when you do get it wrong and people from that group try to point it out, learn from it.

Instead, you are digging in your heels or worse, copping out with "I'm just sharing an opinion...". You can't convince the women your opinion is right, so you just bemoan the loss of "free speech." You want to go back to the good old days when women just rolled their eyes when a man said dumb stuff.

Do you see how messed up it is that you are telling assertive women that assertiveness is a male trait? And you think everyone agrees with you? And you don't think you're being the least bit insulting by saying this?

You accidently insult people and cry innocence. I know you don't intend to be insulting. What if you accidently rear end somebody in a car? You didn't intend to hit the car. Do you say it's hilarious and tell them to get over it?

What if, instead of dismissing the criticism you hear as if it is coming from weak people who get upset too easily and can't stand to hear an opinion they don't like (yep, that's pretty sexist), what if you saw these women as busy capable leaders that are taking time out of their busy lives to assertively try to help you better communicate with 50% of the population?

Would that change anything in this thread? On this forum?

A wise man once said...

"Change your thoughts and change your world."
You brought it up. I assume you believe it. But are you going to live it?

I challenge you, as a leader and as a man, show us how to be humble enough to do this.

Or is it only other people, oh I mean women younger than you, that need changing?

Because that would be pretty sexist...

-----------------

If you are a man reading this, I challenge you as well. Take a hard look at your assumptions about women.

We are all on here to be or become entrepreneurs. I am not some social justice warrior fighting for all things liberal left. I am a believer in truth. And if you hold wrong ideas in your head about any group, gender, race, etc, it will hold you back in business in ways you will be blind to see. This thread is just one example. I see so many like it on this forum. You will have difficulty leading people like that, and you will have difficulty serving customers like that.

At the very least, become a better marketer by educating yourself about other people's beliefs.

But more importantly, become a better leader.
 

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This was a great article for me. I don't make a habit of bombing business relationships relationships, but I sure want to sometimes.

People will let you down. That is fact. How you deal with it separates the leaders from the hotheads.

I voice my displeasure with Warren Buffet often, but this is sage advice.

Ironically, I was kicked out of the building where Buffet has his office in Omaha. His security guard (being a dick) had me FUMING so I ended up calling him a fat fk! lmao
 
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Kak

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I did. After an exhaustive reply, I let it go. I have more to deal with than snowflakes with hurt feelings that have a bloodthirst for revenge - for nothing. Oh no - was that not tactful? So little time - so many snowflakes.
 

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The relationships I have with some of my favorite clients started out with me wanting to tell them to kick rocks. Sometimes my job is to muck through the bs until we get to the gold...
That is very true. I think that after a while in business your bs radar gets really tuned in and you can figure out what is the bs worth wading through and in which cases you should run for the hills.
 

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This was a great article for me. I don't make a habit of bombing business relationships relationships, but I sure want to sometimes.

People will let you down. That is fact. How you deal with it separates the leaders from the hotheads.

I voice my displeasure with Warren Buffet often, but this is sage advice.

Thanks for the article!
You have no idea how this advice to keep your calm saved me a good number of times.

Holding back from blasting a crappy client about their shitty treatment for 1 day, helped me to calmly and tactfully discuss my withdrawal from the job with him.

Result: Got paid money that I didn't expect ( a few grand for a couple hours' of work), plus a decent Upwork rating- 3.9 instead of 1 or 2.

This works for personal life as well.

For some reasons, the family had a huge row recently, and there were many times I just wanted to move out and never come back, ever.

But I stuck it through, listened to both side, did my best to negotiate differences and compromises (the first few chapters of Never Split the Difference are GOLD, especially on what tone of voice to use, and how to extract and voice out all parties' motives and pain-points)...and at least today, they aren't tearing at each other's throats.
 

GigMistress

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I struggle with the emotional control. Obviously, I know that controlling is the right thing to do, but in the moment, it’s easier said than done. Applies in so many areas of life.
My friend had the same issue. That is why I made the suggestion to her that restraint could be a weapon. If you can internalize the feeling that you ARE fighting back and ARE gaining the upper hand in the discussion by remaining calm and professional, it may alleviate that. It did for her.

Of course, ideally you will reach a point where you are actually not reacting emotionally to people whose opinions you have no reason to give credence to, but until then, perhaps you could try staring placidly at the other person while thinking, "Ha! F you! You have no idea that I'm in control here and you're making an a$$ of yourself while I give nothing back."
 

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Not to be sexist, but let's call it the way it is - that's a skill women seem to be particularly good at. Let's call it what it is - passive confrontation and control. Or, so they think, anyway.

Be careful with this. Several times I have just pulled the plug on good relationships because of the other parties refusal to work things out. It didn't start out bad, but they seemed to enjoy holding back their participation, mistakenly thinking there were in control - very much like you describe - except I did not look like an idiot in the process. Sometimes, to make progress, a push is required to get results. If everyone was intelligent and mature, there would be no need for managers - but that's not the case.

That technique works for a while. Until it doesn't. Then, to their surprise, I broke the stalemate and just gave up. Game over. They win if that makes them happy. The point is - they didn't win - and neither did I. But they stood their ground - for a while, anyway.

The older (more experienced) I get the less tolerance I have for egos and games. Somewhere along the way, I came to realize that I am trading a day of my life today for whatever happens today - and that has dramatically changed my opinion of people that want to play games and/or waste time.

I'm much happier, much more productive, and much more successful, now because I play the game to win - without going into overtime. Win - move on - and yes, it is possible for everyone to be happy in the process. Yet I still encounter the game players. Two days ago some clown told me he only had five more minutes to talk to me because his lunch was coming up. I immediately said to have a good lunch and brought the conversation to a very fast close - no sale for him - no future contact allowed either. He doesn't DESERVE my business. Ah - it's so nice not having to reach to make things work like I used to do. I will meet someone 75% of the way - and if that's not good enough - goodbye.

I don't insult people, nor do I get into a pissing match. But I do require that things move forward. I just thought you would like to hear "the other side of the story" that your friend might have not considered. To her, she was being attacked. I doubt it was that at all. If and when she takes the stance to over-deliver, she will gladly be receiving praise. Every business needs and every manager wants, good people to work with, whether they are workers or customers. Make it so.
You lost me at "Not to be sexist, but ______"

Obviously those weren't good relationships to begin with and you've learnt from it.

You're generalizing.

I know people just like that from the opposite sex as well. And I'm not going around suggesting men are good at X or Y.

Because it's sexist.
 

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My tenant went on vacation for a week and didn't tell me. I ended up getting my rent check late on the 8th but let it slide because they are usually on time and were patient with me when I applied epoxy to the garage floor.

The smell was bad for about a week and they stayed elsewhere during that time. Yes I notified them ahead of time and they were ok with the idea, neither of us realized the smell would linger. Yes I reimbursed them pro-rata for that month.

I was tempted to lash out because of the late rent but they also just had a kid and it was their first vacation as a family - lots of stress.

Patience and delaying judgements/anger is a skill, people are human and have their own issues. We do not need to take everyone's opinion personally. Sometimes people are just shitty bosses and don't know how to manage, more a reflection of them than you.

It is also helpful to look at a person's baseline. If they're an a**hole to everyone then it probably isn't you and striking back is probably a waste of energy.

Other times people have bad days and have pent up emotional energy and taken it out on the wrong people.

PS now I have next months rent check ahead of time too
 
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Andy Black

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I do this in the forum as well as real life.
 

Andy Black

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I suppose your avatar is the face you make when it happens :rofl: :rofl:
It could well be! That’s actually my “How do I create an avatar for social media?” face.
 

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Lol. I just stopped in for some good advice. Instead the theme which was supposed to be present has taken a complete 180.

Can we say that this is the internet in general these days? Everyone has a soap box, whether they deserve one or not.
 

BellaPippin

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Wow. This this left the topic quickly.

I'm sorry @Kak, I didn't mean to derail your train. You were sharing something of value indeed. And thank you @BizyDad for articulating things way better than me.
 

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