We’ve all had relationships with people in our lives that have turned out to be what we call “high maintenance,” right? You’re probably wincing now at the very thought of what it takes out of you to keep such company.
Well, let’s consider a few lessons from a well oiled machine that will keep us from becoming one of those high maintenance individuals. I’ll use our office copier/printer as an example.
- When we provide the appropriate level of care and service for this piece of equipment, we don’t expect to encounter paper jams. To apply that same thought to the workplace, when we have appropriate communication and know the expectations, we shouldn’t be causing jams in the lives of others.
- If I keep sufficient toner in the machine, the print is nice and crisp. Similarly, if I have clarity about the expected outcome of a relationship or project, I can relate to the individual or work with the team to produce a result that is consistent with the expectation.
- If the copier is not plugged in, there is no power to make copies. Likewise, if I am not personally plugged in or engaged, I will not be effective.
- The machine must be connected to the network to get input from other sources. In similar fashion, I must communicate with various stake-holders in order to pull the relevant information together for my project and see the big picture.
To function smoothly and enhance the interactions with co-workers, family and friends, let’s do our preventative maintenance. Oil your gears with good communication and human relations skills and watch things flow!
“Do everything readily and cheerfully—no bickering, no second-guessing allowed! Go out into the world uncorrupted, a breath of fresh air in this squalid and polluted society. Provide people with a glimpse of good living and of the living God.
Philippians 2:14-15a The Message