This week it struck like lightning. As I was riding the early morning train to Amsterdam and crossed the fields, the sunbeams hit my face as the music played softly in my ears. I experienced a moment of peace when the lyrics made everything fall into place. I’m raised in a loving family by an amazing mom and dad. Sometimes it’s hard to imagine how valuable the lessons our parents teach us can be. They truly determine my blueprints more than I ever realized before, even though I always try to be aware of the things I learn in life from the interactions I have with the people that cross my many paths. Ironically enough, I needed a song to figure out the most important lesson I’ve learned from my creators and a lesson I live by every day, and it makes a difference “Always stay humble and kind.”
Even though my dad never really finished high school, he’s the most successful man I’ve ever met or even know from any other source. His work ethic is incredible, he is always positive, but most importantly, he’s always respectful and kind. It’s hard not to like him even when he corrects you. He worked himself up over the years attending courses, getting diploma’s and, more importantly, by being amazing in everything he does. As an operational manager responsible for managing his teams and customers at a decent-sized facility organization, he makes a difference for many people every day! Never feeling too good to get his own hands dirty despite his position, always stayed humble.
Way Way Back
A while ago, I had a couple of drinks with some friends from high school. They shared amazing memories of being at my house, surrounded by my warm and welcoming parents that offered us the possibility to have a good time within reason. Getting that space always made us respect the boundaries that came with it. The times I didn’t, I still truly regret and learned valuable lessons off.
I’m grateful for my dad’s wisdom and the way he can transfer that to me, mostly by example, not forcing it on me but by giving me a choice to apply. He does the right thing using knowledge and experience to help his staff and the organization to a higher level! For being him, he’s respected by many, and that often gives him the right impact!
The Resemblance Is Striking
It might sound funny that I always compare managing my staff members with raising children. This, despite the fact, I prefer to manage on an equal level. The resemblance in behavior, however, is striking. Even though I don’t have much experience raising kids, I always love to see how parents “manage” theirs. In the end, I guess we are both managing human beings. The challenging thing about that is that no-one is exactly the same.
Everybody has different buttons that need to be pushed to get the most out of them. That’s why it’s so important to know your employees. Do they need to be disciplined, or do they need some encouragement? The key is to always treat people with admiration and respect. If you are humble and kind, it’s easier to value other people and make people feel valued. That automatically makes it easier to find common ground, and that’s the foundation to grow your relationship and get things done weather in your personal or business life.
Shocking – Development Is Reversible
There aren’t very many people that master the skill of staying humble and kind. Over the many years of meeting people in different labor settings, markets, and industries, I noticed that a high number of people didn’t feel appreciated and respected by their manager or employer in general. Last week I read a disturbing article that pointed out that 1 out of 4 of the higher educated Dutch people currently searching for another job do this because of their manager.
Our findings are that lower educated, but often specialized people experience the same but stick around with their employer longer. Especially the older staff members. As the current markets show, there is a shortage of technical staff members. Mainly younger employees often switch companies for a little extra money at the competition, often because there is simply not much more to stay for. Little appreciation, high work pressure, no social benefits, or incentives do not encourage employee retention. If companies focus on positive and appreciative leadership a little more, they can connect to their employees on a better level and make them feel valuable, appreciated, and needed, resulting in a more durable collaboration.
We Can All Relate!
So it wasn’t until my epiphany moment in the early morning train that I realized this is the very core of Oteos. I started the company because I want the world to be a little more humble and kind. It would make work a better place to be. Because in our core, we are all the same. We share the need for appreciation, acknowledgment, and we all want to grow in some way. We all have moments of high and moments of low. Even though we all cope with things in different ways, deep inside, we can relate. Embracing this knowledge, we offer businesses support and inspiration on many levels.
Sometimes it’s good to be a bit more conscious of our lives. To really be aware of the impact others have on us and how we can impact them. Which valuable lessons have you learned? What are your blueprints? How do you impact others?