Some situations are viewed in black and white; right and wrong. Yet, many people think situations also have a grey area where solutions are not so easily discerned. This is not just about the choices people make, but the thought process they go through to arrive at their decisions.
Submitted for Your Discussion & Consideration
It’s springtime and you stop by a nursery to pick up plants for your garden. It’s a big shop, and you wander among the greenhouses looking for just the right flowers and vegetables.
As you enter one of the greenhouses, you hear someone speaking brusquely. You can’t hear everything, but it sounds like someone is complaining about how plants are being potted. You hear several nasty remarks. As you reach the far end, you turn and come across the person who’s been speaking. It turns out to be one of the managers, who is repeatedly telling an employee that their work is low quality, they didn’t separate the plants right, and other negative comments. The manager makes several points by grabbing plants and thumping them on the table or pulling them apart, flinging dirt in the air.
The employee, who is a senior citizen, has her head bowed. The only thing she says during the whole tirade is, “Well, I guess I can’t do anything right.”
The manager sees you and leaves. The older woman is in tears and can’t look at you.
You’re upset too, at all the harsh, negativity poured on this worker. And, you’re sad that someone who could potentially be 70 or older was just publicly chewed out by a mean-sounding boss.
Do you think that you would say anything to the employee, or offer comfort?
Would you approach the manager about the way she chastised the worker?
Or, do you think that managing in this way is appropriate? Do you think the worker should just work to do better?
Would you buy anything, or leave the nursery empty handed and buy elsewhere?
Have you ever worked for someone who was more about pointing out mistakes than recognizing effort?
Have you been a “bossy” boss who tried to motivate employees like this? How’d that work out for you?