But do we? Because, quite often, when we “call it like we see it,” we are likely going to really hurt someone’s feelings, affecting their self-esteem. Is that what we want…probably not? We all would like to have a “smooth-sailing-boat.” But then, when you “call-it-like-you-see-it,” you don’t leave any room for a miss-interpretation….no room for mistakes, or variance. Is that what we want?
Now… I’m not talking about baseball, or some other precise sport. I’m talking about day-to-day life events. If someone has bad breath, is it really necessary that you blurt it out in the Sales Meeting? Or, could you, mention it casually later on; or even offer them a CERT. If a co-worker has “screwed up a project,” badly, but not destroyed it; do you call him down in front of all his peers, or do you collectively help him get it back on track?
The answer all of these would be, hopefully, that we would “go their rescue,” and help them save-the-day. I am probably one of those who practice calling it “like it is,” as I’ve never been one to leave room for miss-understanding. I don’t want anyone to have to read between the lines. But, that said, I would NEVER, and have NEVER, called someone down in front of others. But…. I’ve had it done to me, and I’ve seen it done to others, many times over the years.
I’ve told this story before… once, when I was about 30 years old, and as Corporate Comptroller of a state-wide distributor, I was “cussed” at over something wrong, but simply minor. I had heard this fellow, the owner, do the same thing to “everybody” else, and I was pre-determined that he wouldn’t do it to me. My Mother taught me not to let people take advantage of me. So, when this guy went into his tirade, I just bit my lip and didn’t even respond, nor did he expect me to. But the next morning, when he came in, I politely called him away from the general office area, where we could speak in PRIVATE. I commenced to tell him that “I didn’t talk like that, nor could I permit anyone to talk to me as he did. Further, what he did to the others, while not appropriate, was surely not acceptable working conditions, and I was surprised that he could keep an adequate work-force. He was well known for his “wicked tongue.” I concluded by conversation with this: 1. I wanted his immediate apology, and 2. If he ever did it again, that I was quitting on the spot….and, if this didn’t suit him…then he could have my immediate resignation. He immediately apologized, and I believed him to be sincere, and I stayed about 3-4 more months, and left for a bigger and better opportunity. I might add, though, I went into a situation just as bad, but the owner of that company, in four years of employment, NEVER raised his voice to ME, nor treat me inapproiately.
So, as you can see….calling it like it is… has a time and a place. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 – There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.