Friday – Dang, Y’all Can Be Mean

Dang Y'all Can Be Mean

I realize that my alliteration is off but all the F words seemed inappropriate. 

I don’t think too many people set out to be mean, but the road to hell is paved with good intentions. 

Subtle Negativity

I’m not talking about hateful or blatantly critical or even bold. I’m talking about the subtle, yet perceptible, negativity we all are guilty of. My face certainly betrays me when subjects or people come up whom I do not like. 

But, other areas of generalized negativity also abound. One example is the response whenever someone is promoted. Where the appropriate or decent thing to do would be to look at the person promoted and work to see them differently and support them in their new role, that’s not what we do. 

Y’all Said…He Said…She Said?

My personal favorite is the “report and rumor to start a rumor” dynamic. It goes a little something like this: “I heard people talking about so and so being a Satanist. I’m not saying it, I just heard someone saying it.” Always said in public and always at full volume. 

Another fave of mine is the lack of diplomacy and tact associated with how we deliver information. 

5-Star Reviews

Unless you think that we (leadership) is utterly stupid, you have to know that we are able to decipher food reviews into appropriate boxes: Box 1. Recipe wasn’t a hit and we may want to look at swapping out the item on future menus. Box 2. Staff didn’t like the meal because of pickiness or a specific ingredient or cultural unfamiliarity and are so blatant in their disgust that they made it clear to the kids that nothing good can come from enjoying that meal. Box 3. New menu item, we all tried it or encouraged the kids to try it and everyone discovered that they like it. 

Now, the reviews come in with far less directness, but it’s pretty easy to decipher. The same premise goes for VoTech assignments. Believe it or not, we know who’s lazy and who can get kids working and having good attitudes. If you want the best kids, be in the second group. 

The thing is, have you ever tried to coordinate food for 50 or VoTech for all the kids and staff? I believe that, if you had, your empathy would be elevated and your kindness would be on display. Do I need to have everyone take a turn or do we want to choose our words and honor our relationships more voluntarily?

Heath Kull

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