Every day, there are moments when you have to make a choice about someone- to believe the best or to believe the worst. Quite honestly, believing the best about someone is not always easy for me. I think this comes from my past, where I dealt with people I should have been able to trust who were in fact not so trustworthy. It is so important to recognize that our prior experiences shape who we are and how we respond.
When someone does not do something as expected at your animal hospital, it is easy to jump to the conclusion that that person does not care or is an idiot. BUT, if you did the same thing you would believe that you just made a mistake without thinking something is fundamentally wrong with your character. This is Fundamental Attribution Error– essentially giving ourselves the benefit of the doubt but not giving others the benefit of the doubt.
I ran across a similar version of the commitments to each other listed below and thought that it would be a good thing to institute with my team-mainly because assuming the best is such a challenge to me!
Our Commitments to Each Other
When there is a gap between what I expected and what I experienced, I will believe the best.
When other people assume the worst about you, I will come to your defense.
If what I experience begins to erode my trust, I will come directly to you about it.
When you confront me about the gaps I ‘ve created, I will tell you the truth.
Not everyone reading this struggles with minding the gap, but it can definitely be a challenge for me! I literally have to be self aware enough to notice the negative self talk going on in my head about someone and stop it.
Living out these commitments can be tough some days, but it is the only way great teams can truly be built. Staying true to commitments like these will enable you to create an amazing culture in your hospital- a true TEAM who can thrive in the challenging times we all face.
How do you mind the gap? Do you tend to naturally give people the benefit of the doubt or do you, like me, tend to assume the worst?