When I picked up the listener and her hello was already shaking with tears, I knew it was going to be a long call.
It’s a long backstory, but the short version reads as follows:
She had to deal with all sorts of things in and around the office, a lot of fights.She had really worked hard, went far beyond that and she had asked for a pay rise that she really wanted. She had just found out that she didn’t get this raise and was really upset. And that’s why we’re on the phone now.
The pay increase alone would not have been so important if it had not been in a very contradictory relationship that would have developed with a competing department.This led to many difficult situations in the office, which put an additional strain on the last 4 months in the job.
Denying the raise was just the last ball.
The first 90 degrees to turn someone around and put them in a better mood is listening.Simply sit back and unload. People, especially girlfriends, really only need someone to listen to them so they can relieve their stress.
After it was finished.I said, “Hey – I’m really sorry. I understand all your frustration and definitely think you are very valuable to her, baby. You kicked a lot in the butt for your department and did everything right. “
“But sometimes you can do everything right and not win.This happens to everyone over and over again. “
Step 1) Listen and show understanding.
The next part of the conversation – I did something different:
“I mean … I kind of told you that you probably didn’t get the pay rise.Didn’t I? “
Why did I tell her that?
She had received a huge donation last year of 15,000 US dollars.Before this job, she had virtually no work experience. She was informed by the university’s budget director that they had locked their budgets for the year, things were tight.
I work in finance.I monitor budgets. We rarely distribute massive increases every year. If I were a budget director and the cost reduction was severely limited, I would look at her on paper and say, “She’s already making good money and we just gave her a big pay rise last year…”
This is not a technology company that floats in cash.This is science. In the United States in particular, there is enormous cost pressure.
I reminded them how many of their fellow students were unemployed and struggling to find a university job.I reminded them that just because you’re doing a great job, you don’t get a pay rise every year in the real world.
But I also told her that doesn’t mean she failed.It’s just the reality of things. Just because you’re better than someone else or doing a great job doesn’t mean you get what you want.
In short, I told her very kindly that she had unrealistic expectations.why? Because she had to hear it.
Sometimes your instinct in these situations is to go 100% with the person and say, “You’re so right!How dare they do this to you? Who could hurt you so much? “
But that doesn’t really help the situation, especially if it’s not correct.It freezes them in a state of false victimhood, blindness to their mistakes or false assumptions.
Look, we are all guilty of having high expectations of ourselves, or of reading a situation completely wrong, or of being painfully unconscious or simply being wrong without knowing it.
Telling someone the truth is a surprisingly effective way to cheer someone up.to bring them back to earth.
I mean as a friend/partner/family, isn’t that what we were commissioned for?Are you kind and honest with the people we love? Don’t just tell them what they want to hear?