For the last few days, I've been thinking about a professional acquaintence turned new friend... They have a family member with a serious health issue, which happens to everyone at some point or another.
I was struck because, when I spoke to this person, she was more concerned with letting me get back to my business than what was going on in her life. I couldn't do it. I couldn't say, "Hey, um, yeah... sorry about your sick uncle...I gotta go return some important e-mail."
E-mail! "F" e-mail.
If it's important, they'll call. People don't call anymore. You know why? It's never important...not as important as a friend with a really serious problem.
I have another friend who recently busted a wheel on her car swirving out of the way of a pothole. It was raining and late at night. Rather than call anyone for help, she slept in the car in a parking lot until morning and then called a tow truck.
Have we gotten so low in our expectations of people? Have we gotten so self absorbed that we give off the impression that we can't be bothered with any kind of personal inconvenience?
At the end of the day, I want to deal with people who not only think I can make money for or with them but who care about me as a person. Our monthly board meetings include a few minutes for "How are you guys doing?" To me, that's almost the most important part of the meeting, because we're building applications for people, leveraging people, empowering people...if our own people aren't doing so well, it is highly unlikely our people centric application will amount to much.