Sarcastic, Incompetence Or Leadership

When I was working on a project I said to someone, we need a first and last name of the customer and Mr. is not a first name, I was falsely accused of being sarcastic. That hurt me deeply because I don’t think I have a sarcastic bone in my body. As I started thinking on the matter I did pray and ask God to help me pray for the person who falsely accused me.

But then I wondered how they could come to the conclusion that I was sarcastic or even rude? Then I asked myself, do I have a communication problem? The Lord showed me he created us all with different gifts, different talents. We use our gifts and talents throughout life to help others, to teach others, to be a benefit not only to God and believers, but also to society.

As a technically minded person, I pay attention to details and follow directions. You might think that means I am concerned over every little detail. You would be wrong. That is not what I mean. Actually, I have all my life been in a leadership role in some form or another. Even when in the Army, I never peeled potatoes or went on maneuvers. They pulled me aside and sent me to leadership training school. What it does mean is when you give me a project, I will be sure to complete it according to your specifications, every detail. I have a purpose here so stick with me. Let me try to explain.

Let’s say a customer comes to you and tells you, I have a project for you. They say, I want you to build a car for me. The car needs to have wheels, have a motor and be able to carry 800 pounds of weight, you interested? I would then ask, what are the “details” ?  The customer says, I have five criteria:
~ The car needs wheels
~ The car needs to have a motor
~ The car needs to transport 800 pounds of weight
~ The budget is $ 3000.
~ The car needs to be delivered completed in 30 days.
That is it.

Question: Does the customer care how many wheels the car has? Does the customer care what type of motor the car has? No and No.

Typically, the group would set up project leaders. They would put one group, with knowledge and experience aka gifted by God, in charge of the wheels. Another group would handle the motor. Another group would handle weight issues. Then you would have the budget and finance group and finally the testing and QC ( quality control) group.

If believers, they would gather together and take a knee bringing the matter to the Lord and pray for wisdom, guidance and success. What happens then? What happens between those 30 days?

The person who ordered the car, the customer, will be back in 30 days expecting to see a car that meets their criteria. So how would you handle this? What happens next?

Sadly, this is where not only companies but people make it or break it. There has been a shift from the 30s, 40s, 50s and 60s until now. In the past, people looked at the project, put the teams together and produced the product. Today, in 2017, people and business is more concerned with how you speak to each other, what details are in the rivets or bolts. What tree or weed or animal was displaced for this product. This is labeled as micro-management.

And it does not matter what job, what business, what field you are in – customers buy products. Sure there are some customers who want organic, but business in general is all about producing a product or service a lot of customers will want to buy.

As a project leader or manager, you don’t care about the type of rivets, the bolt chemistry or the composition of the wheels. micro-managers do. Good managers and project leaders don’t care if the people putting the car together have a college degree – can they do the job is what matters. Can they do the work with excellence. And along the way if the project manager sees someone struggle they will look to their team and say, certainly, this person needs help. Question:  By saying, certainly this person needs help, are you being sarcastic and rude?

When you look at the word sarcastic, by definition it means bitterly, severe taunting. It is a reproach or expression uttered with scorn or bitterness. So when I said to someone Mr. is not a first name I was making a factual statement covering the details of the project. The customer’s criteria was first and last name. And when I said this person certainly needs help, it was not sarcastic, it was pointing out to their team leader this person is struggling with this and needs help understanding the details (what the customer ordered).

I am beginning to wonder if not only the church but Americans have lost their mojo. Have they all turned in to, what one person said, snowflakes? Micro-managers are on the rise and people seem to be more concerned with how you speak and not the project. Yes, even in the church. When was the last time you heard a hell, fire and brimstone message? Does that mean hell, fire and brimstone no longer exist? No. Hell is real if you want to hear the truth or not.

The solution? Be a great project manager and state up front, if you are scared easily or offended by every little thing, or require hand holding during your job – do not apply. But if you are willing to learn and pitch in and help others, to be thick skinned and tender hearted and will do a job of excellence – then by all means we want you.

Until next time.

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