"the seven habits in real life": i supervise a staff of about twenty-six housekeepers for the local hospital. we hire a lot of college kids because we can offer a flexible schedule that fits their college timetable. a couple of full-time employees came to me complaining about a college student on their team. they said that he was always late, that the quality of his work had dropped off and that he'd take hour-long lunch breaks instead of the allotted thirty minutes. by the time they finished their report, they were pretty worked up. i knew this student quite well. he was a good worker, but he had transferred recently to the state university sixty kilometres out of town. his commuting took a heavy toll on him. as i thought about his situation, i remembered the principles of being loyal to the absent, to avoid blaming and instead, to focus on the solution. i decided to do that. in the past, i would have been pretty direct and autocratic. however, i wanted the two complaining employees to feel part of the problem-solving process. so, we started talking about their relationship with him while remaining loyal. i asked them when the problems started. then i told them about his transfer to the state university. with this information, they could sense why things were changing. i could tell that just identifying the root cause of the problem empowered them. now they felt part of the solution. i told them what they could expect. i would meet with the student, work out a solution and if things didn't improve, we would get back together. before understanding these habits of effectiveness, i would have called this young college student into my office and come out blasting, "these are the facts, if you don't straighten up and start getting to work on time and doing a decent job, i am going to cut your hours." instead, when i called him into my office, i knew it was important to guard his self-esteem. "umair," i said, "we need to talk about what is going on with you." then he explained his situation. in response, i asked him, "how can we help you be successful? university is very important to you, and we also have a set standard of performance at the hospital. how can we work this out?" he suggested, "how about i cut my hours to two days a week? on those two days, try very best work. i can also devote all my energy on the other three days to university." this solution was quite simple. his co-workers are happy to work with him. he felt part of the solution and was able to maintain his self-esteem. my job became easier all the way around because i followed the lessons of "the seven habits". answer the following questions: (8) a. what habits out of "the seven habits" are at display here? b. "being loyal to the absent" is part of which paradigm of "the seven habits"? how does it help? c. how will you differentiate between private victory and public victory in the above story?
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Category: statistics | Author: Sarah Aksinia
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