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Give respect to get it in return

Jane Boucher

“All I’m asking for is a little respect.” The words “respect” and “regard” are derived from Latin and French words that capture subtle differences of the verb “to look.” What types of judgments are made when I look at you or you look at me? Respect, or disrespect, comes across in what we say or do or not do.

The feeling of respect toward others originates in our brains and it is there that we have an opportunity to increase the level of respect in our workplaces.

If you want to get it, you have to give it.

To give it you have to pay close attention to those thoughts, judgments, and notions that are ever evolving between your ears.

Do not catalogue people into mental file folders – “very worthy, “worthy,” “not so worthy,” “totally worthless.” Instead, think in a new way.

Begin conversations with the people you have filed away into those less desirable folders.

Take the initiative and engage them in dialogue.

Organize your colleagues, or your work unit in open-ear, open-mind conversation on the topic of respect.What does it mean to each of you and do you receive the respect you want and deserve? If not, why? These types of questions will prompt people to share their respect-related stories from past and present work and life situations.

This will give meaning and tangibility to an otherwise vague concept.

In the topics of vision, mission, values, goals, or working principles respect should be plainly stated and defined.

If you are in a situation where someone’s hard work is being unfairly disvalued, speak up in their defense.

Always practice openness and honesty when creating employee policies.

If someone’s comments or behavior strikes you as disrespectful, bring it to their attention in a diplomatic manner.

Ask yourself, “Would my co-worker say he gets no respect from me?” This is not a question of whether he deserves your respect.

You should treat that person as a human being, deserving of your respect which is your consideration and regard for him as a person.

This can go a long way toward improving your attitude about your co-worker.

Jane Boucher is an author and professional speaker with offices in Reno and Ohio.

Reach her at 775-853-0226, 937- 416-9881 or janeboucher@mail.com.Her websites are http://www.janeboucher.com and ww.janeboucher.org.