This blog post is deliberately hazy to conceal the identities of all of my supporting co-workers so that I can write about one of them.
I work with two completely separate broadcast teams, one for radio and one for television. They’re both outstanding units and I am grateful to be paired with such high level professionals.
My broadcast career spans forty years but I’m not a know-it-all. We are never too old to learn new lessons. Another one just hit me upside my thick skull. MESSAGE!
I was certain that a co-worker on my production team was carelessly sabotaging our broadcasts. She wasn’t being malicious, just careless.
“Why doesn’t she care? Why can’t she keep up with the rest of us? Is she trying to hurt the product?” I would ask myself. “It must be personal.”
Wrong. My male ego was overplaying reality.
It turns out that she had her own challenges that were out of my view. Instead of me doing the prudent thing and asking what I could do to help us improve as a team, I just sloughed it off as her problem.
Had I taken the time to inquire, I would have learned about multiple burdens that complicated her job performance. She was fighting for us and putting out other fires in her own life.
Again, to protect her identity, I cannot specify the issues. All I can do now is admit that I did not provide sufficient support to a teammate because I didn’t ask what I could do.
Why work to resolve an issue when old fashioned resentment and pettiness will suffice? It turns out that I was the lazy one for not providing clarity.
Two lefts make a right. She left the company and left a handwritten note for me.
Here is some of what she wrote:
“I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for always being nice to me. From the day I began here at WHAS, you’ve made my experience a lot easier with your kind words and a smile. I’m forever changed by simply knowing you.”
To quote Col. Nathan Jessup in A Few Good Men, don’t I feel like the asshole.
She concluded the note with “I’m inspired by you and I just can’t thank you enough.”
Actually, I can’t thank YOU enough for reminding me to be awake and helpful to everyone in my life. Best of luck in your next chapter.
You’re the lesson I didn’t know I was learning. I hope I am forever changed by simply knowing you. 🙂