In my high school I was on the student council. I was treasurer, in charge of all of the fund raising and helped in deciding where we spent money. It was an awesome experience campaigning and trying to win the vote. I still remember my campaign slogan, “vote for me, Joshua Lee, I’m a positive, pro-social person, ready to take charge and make a change!” I had to work extra hard because unlike most high school kids my parents did not let me go out. So I campaigned hard, I did something others weren’t. I wasn’t doing all the talking like everyone else. I was listening. I ended up making good friendships and found I enjoyed helping people. Even if the extent of my help was just an ear. This made me perfect for the treasurer, because one of the other jobs that was assigned to me was Grievance Councilor. It was now my duty to handle any student complaints about the school or a teacher. Part of this job wasn’t to just pass out grievances, but to talk to the person and find out what the deeper issue was. It usually had to do with a student upset with a teacher over something non measurable. Like constantly being called out for bad behavior. This position that I held at the school for two years really prepared me for life. In some ways it better prepared me for success then the actual core classes did.
Now I am a retail store manager. My job is only part selling and mainly solving problems. Whether it has to do with scheduling conflicts or customer complaints. My job is to find the core problem and solve it. I’ve had to deal with some of the most difficult people I never could have imagined existed. It’s a challenge, but I actually enjoy it. It’s awesome and sometimes frustrating to others when a customer is completely irrate and I calmly deal with them and bring them back to a happy customer. It takes patience above anything; and an attitude that isn’t black or white.
So often we are disconnected from reality. It’s not easy to notice, but we’re so wrapped up with the events happening online we stop paying attention to those around us. Writing this today has me thinking that I need to take a bigger step away from social networks and build those relationships with people like I did back in high school. We didn’t have Facebook back then where you could simply delete someone who you didn’t like. You had to work out your issues, even if it meant taking it out behind the school. This is a whole other topic to be discussed. My way of dealing with conflicts is to not be the one doing most the talking.
How do you guys deal with conflicts? Are things quick to reach a shooting match? Do you remain calm? Explain in the comments below. We can always learn from others and I’m always looking to learn something new myself.