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Posted By Ted Baumhauer
Driving my youngest to school every day can lead to some unexpected lessons. Most of the time we listen to the radio or talk about what she’s going to do in school that day but occasionally the traffic is a little too much for me to engage with her. This past week with all the snow was one of those times. 
 
Because traffic was coming to a complete stop ahead I got off the free way an exit early. At the end of the ramp there is a stop sign. For a right hand turn, which I needed to make, there are two lanes of traffic. The farthest lane was bumper to bumper but the lane I needed to pull into was empty. So I pulled out and stayed even with the bumper to bumper traffic as it moved forward looking for a place to merge. No go. In fact a lady in the right hand lane keep me boxed out all the way up and yelled an obscenity at me. I thought I was doing the right thing but obviously she didn’t and she felt pretty strongly that I was cutting in on her and the rest of those in line. 
 
My intention wasn’t to be what she called me out her window but somehow my actions, or perceived actions, conveyed another message. Not to be too nice here I wasn’t happy with her actions either.
 
Let me ask you a question…Are you an honest person with integrity? I hope you answered yes, yes I am! We will judge ourselves based on our intentions but the only thing we can judge others on is their actions. That lady in the car didn’t know me and had no reason to believe my actions, or how she perceived my actions, were anything but selfish even though, in my mind, I wasn’t trying to be selfish.
 
I would like to think if we could have talked about it we could have worked it out. Where in your work life might there be some miscommunication or understanding about intentions and actions? That is a vital conversation to have.
 

 

 
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Ted Baumhauer
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