The 9 best civility points I’ve learned this year
Today is the first anniversary for this blog. I’ve learned a great deal listening, reading your comments, hearing your problems and suggestions and researching topics. Sometimes I follow paths you’ve suggested or little trails off your ideas to find credible and reliable information.
These are the points I think about in reviewing the past year.
1. Much of civility comes down to the golden rule endorsed by all the great world religions. Treat others only in ways that you're willing to be treated in the same exact situation. It’s empathy. You need to imagine you are the other person.
2. Assertive communication is a core communication skill. It means that you stand up for yourself, express yourself effectively and prevent others from taking advantage of you. It can help control stress and anger. Assertiveness is not aggressiveness -- disregarding the needs, feelings and opinions of others. Strive for a culture in which one is expected to not back down in the face of the bad behavior of others and in which there is an expectation of resolving conflicts or at least getting the issues out for everyone to see, discuss and work towards resolution.
3. Workplace bullies need to reform or be eradicated in the United States. We are far behind other countries in addressing the problem. Workplace bullying is repeated, health impairing mistreatment comprised of verbal abuse and/or threatening, intimidating conduct and/or work interference.
4. Sexual harassment lives on and it should not. Sexual harassment is the inappropriate sexualization of an otherwise non-sexual relationship. The severity of the harassment is determined to a large extent by the impact on the victim. Sexual harassment in the workplace is unwelcome or unwanted attention of a sexual nature that causes discomfort, humiliation, offense or distress, and/or interferes with the job.
5. Civility requires active listening. Esprit de corps, the common spirit inspiring enthusiasm, devotion and strong regard for the honor of the group, needs everyone’s voice to build a culture, a community. One of the most civil utterances is the simple, humble, and smart question ‘What do you think?’ Listen actively to the answers.
6. Civility is respecting others. The components of civility include humility, compassion, empathy, responsibility, discretion, trust, assertion, kindness, interest, honesty, ethics, integrity and more.
7. Civility improves communications and relationships. A more civil workplace produces a better quality of life. When your quality of life is raised, your job performance improves as well as your engagement at work. It creates energy and inspires creativity and productivity.
8. Leaders do not have subordinates when they are leading. Leaders give up authoritarian control, because to lead is to have followers, and following is always a voluntary activity. Those in management have authority vested in them by the company, and subordinates largely do as they are told. Managers can be leaders but it is obviously not automatic.
9. Civil discourse should be embraced. Recognize a person’s right to advocate ideas different from yours. Civility requires that you make an honest and continuing effort to understand the views and reasoning of others and are willing to be persuaded others’ ideas or the group’s ideas are better than yours.
Civility resource information and topics are endless. You who are interested in civility have offered news items, quotations, books, suggestions for topics and inspiration. Thank you. Don’t stop now. Blessings on you who think less about yourselves and who strive to make workplaces more civil.