Knowing yourself well enough,.. for work
The three parts of you
The Ancient Greeks introduced the aphorism “gnothi seauton” meaning “know thyself”
or “know thy measure”. It takes considerable time and life experience to gauge our own potential and limits.
We have to ask this question:
Are you a person driven by emotion and feelings? Are you someone who gets fed up or angry when things don’t go your way at work? Perhaps you’re working in a fast paced marketing, advertising or some other service industry where the daily challenges around you are just driving you nuts. And your response to that has been being upset or even angry, that people around are unable to work with you.
It has often been said that there are three parts to a person. Personality, Temperament and Character.
Personality is the outward face of someone. It’s the joker, the interactor, the entertainer, the actor. The nice outward sheen of everyday life that’s courteous and on its best behaviour.
The temperament is the next but a thin layer. This is the moody behaviour part. It’s the responder and reactor to either good or bad news. The emotional valley where conflicts are sometimes dealt with poorly. Anger, ego and slip of tongue are its comfortable residents. The temperature is also fluctuating between hot, cold and lukewarm.
The next is character. If temperament is a valley, character is the deep abyss. Temperament is the thin layer that hides this final one. This is where the real person exists. All the joys of personality and the mood swings of temperament find their deep roots from the deep well of character.
With time, deep and wholesome changes in character will eventually bear good fruits on the surface. But there are also lots of people who only function from their temperament without realising the need for this deep change in their character. This may result in what we know in this sense as ‘late bloomers’.
To speed up your growth in this area, reading autobiographies of successful people could help to open your eyes and relate to your current station in life.
The Power of Relationships
Have you journeyed through your career in a bad way? Have your relationships with your employer or employees over the years, been less than cordial? Have there been times when you decided to simply resign or let someone go for the wrong reasons? Perhaps you’ve been ignorant about the need to build positive relationships.
One can never break relationships — whether good or bad. Good ones can build you up and sustain you. Bad ones come back to haunt.
As a young person, the writer realises that he has paid some personal price over the years in his work life, in neglecting to take care of his professional relationships with his employers. The focus was just on being an employee with an employee mindset and taking home a salary once the month was out. This, without fail, caused a deep frustration and rift in professional relationships. In so doing, contributed to a toxic workplace. This ignorance, caused the same thing over and over again in other companies.
The converse is also true. Many employers have unawares done the same.
Whatever path and career you choose, you should determine to have the correct mindset and attitude. Be a person that is genuinely interested in people, easy to work with and kind in speech.
There exist employers who drive their business with just their personality, ego and temperament. As a result, their daily order of business and dealings with their staff is like riding a roller coaster. The fluctuation is tangible. As time goes by, a strong work relationship can’t be formed. Employees will leave and new ones will come in, retrain, only to leave again. This will result in the company being stagnant for years on end with no projection of growth or anything to offer employees or the business owner himself.
In contrast, I remember Calvin and Ben,… who invested in relationships at the workplace.
Both these men are extremely successful. As the size of their businesses keep growing, a few things that stand out is their strength of character and their genuine love of people. This is true in their offices as their employees have been with them for decades. The difference of course is in the professional relationships that they’ve built with their employees over the years. The company, its fortunes and reputation grew quickly and there was nothing that the employees would not do for them as their bosses invested in them, d their growth and their training. This type of investment created a sense of belonging and ownership and the very best value was produced.
Each one playing their part
In conclusion, when it comes to charting your career, whether you are a freshie or someone seasoned, we believe that cultivating strong relationships will in turn produce a powerful professionalism at work. We all desire a good and happy place to work in but that does not come on by itself as each one has to play their part. Like a plant, it must be constantly watered, nurtured, fed and taken responsibility for. In the process you will develop and know yourself as a person of capable character, celebrating your success and of the people around you and thus able to withstand any crisis.