As a teenager I can vividly remember my mom saying, “You know, Elizabeth, your mother is always right.” In most case, this phrase followed the lesson that I didn’t want to hear and would immediately trigger a roll of the eyes, a huff and a puff, and a sulk off to my room to chat on the phone with my girlfriends.
The older I get and the more time I spend reflecting on decisions and directions in my life, I have to admit – Mom, yet again, you were right. When I stop and think about who inspired me to become a career women it was most certainly my mom. To this day, her work ethic is unmatched…she is loyal, reliable, and has some of the best customer service skills on record at the large, multi-billion dollar company that she has been with for over 20 years.
Here are some of the simplest but greatest words of wisdom that my mom has shared with me that can make us all better leaders.
- Be nice to everybody. It doesn’t matter if it is the janitor or the c-level executive, when you treat people with respect, it speaks volumes about your character. This doesn’t need to be complex or over-thought – try smiling at people in the hallway or greeting people with a “good morning.”
- The customer is always right. Always listen to and respect your customers. They are the heart of any business and no matter how trivial the request, it deserves an ear and a voice.
- If you don’t ask for it, you won’t get it. Is it a raise, a promotion, recognition? Some Most times you need to ask for the things you want. Be bold, take your career into your own hands – after all, you are responsible for your own destiny.
- Make friends. We spend a lot of our time with “work people”. Connect, share, and take time for them. You never know who your next boss might be (see #1).
- Always act like a lady (or gentleman). Let’s remember the basics – have class, don’t be crass, dress for success, and mind your manners. It is much easier to respect leaders who respect themselves.
Let’s all vow to get over the fact that we all become our mothers (or fathers) and be grateful for the lessons and inspiration they gave us. Thanks, Mom, you are still always right.
Image source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/sidelong/4486790108/