Not your ordinary post I admit but I feel like I want to write about this. I’m on the phone a lot and many times if I am not on the phone I’m writing emails or talking to people on Social Media that we follow and who follow us.
Having written that I have to admit whenever I call a VENDOR (a VENDOR is a person or company we PAY either monthly or occasionally when we need something. Think of it this way-you use a credit card to pay your mechanic – THEY ARE YOUR VENDOR. VENDORS are important people to your life, your business or both. Without them you wouldn’t be able to do much in this “civilized society”. If one of them costs you too much money – there are others out in the world that are cheaper and you can hire them to do what your old vendor chose to have you pay more for.
PEOPLE IN THE SERVICE INDUSTRY can also be VENDORS. You go to a restaurant and a WAITER serves you. Or you go to a bar and THE BARTENDER asks you what you want to drink. These people are in the service business of servicing the public. Then there are people on the PHONE who answer you who represent the company who is your VENDOR.
If you are blunt, rude or just plain awful to people who are your VENDORS or to businesses who are your VENDOR they will treat you in kind. I have learned that being nice to everyone I meet helps me even with people who are nasty to me. If a vendor is nasty I drop them and use another vendor. If that vendor represents a company that is your VENDOR you can always ask to speak to someone else in authority or hang up and call again. Yeah, its problematic to call the same vendor again to get a better nicer person to serve you; but worth it to talk to someone who is not belittling you or making you angry.
Here are some examples of how the rewards are great when you are nice to people who are in the public servicing the public. Once upon a time I was younger and was a barfly. I hung out in bars down on Broadway because I had friends in the business and we hung out after work plenty of nights in the 1990s. NY was a different place then and flourishing with production – TV, Film, & Video. I was Producing a SKETCH COMEDY GROUP at that time filled with wait staff who unfortunately couldn’t act to save their lives but my writing was good so we played a lot of places including THE DUPLEX on 13th Street in NYC Greenwich Village.
The fact that these actors were novices and wanted to come into the group in the first place is because I had made friends out of them. Unfortunately in the long run, they got big headed and went over my head to the booking agent of the clubs and tried to take the contract I signed with each club away from me and the material I wrote for the sketches as well. Fortunately for me all the booking agents told them to go away and read them the riot act about how ungrateful they were to try and hijack my production. To this day, these “actors” are having problems getting hired in NYC clubs because all their names are on a list – a rejection list courtesy of the booking managers I had contracts with. NOT MY FAULT – it’s theirs. I gave them an outlet to act and they butchered that and then tried to take my production & sketches for their own. Thank goodness for copyrights.
In 2001 my friend had a problem with his terrible Father but he had a great relationship with the doorman of his building who was his friend. When his father called the cops and had him arrested because they had a fight & in NYC there was a LAW called THE ELDER LAW, THAT DID NOT PERMIT ANYONE TO PUNCH AN ELDERLY PERSON (THE FATHER) EVEN IF THE FATHER HAD PUNCHED THE SON. My friend called me because I was also his friend and lived in the same building but I didn’t have any money. In turn I called the doorman whose wife was a social worker. She knew the ins and outs of the downtown jail – THE TOMBS – and had $500 lying around for a rainy day and used that cash to bail my friend out of jail. He was very lucky that she had that cash lying around.
If my friend was rude to the doorman and others who serviced the building he would have not had anyone else to help him and he would have been shipped to Rikers Island for the weekend. There he probably would have died because very twisted correction officers were telling him they were going to have him raped. My friend is white. All the COs were black. CO’s are as crazy as the inmates at Rikers because they work in jail therefore they are in jail. My friend told me that he thanks god and his friend the doorman every day for his kindness and friendship. That doorman and his wife saved my buddy who probably would not still be here save for them.
Plenty of times I have been nice to people on the phone, engaged them in conversations, learned about them for a small period of time and then disconnected after they helped solve my issue. While I probably will never see or hear from them again – in that small amount of time I listened to them and they to me. We were the same, in that moment of time – with the same problems, same worries, we commiserated. We came to an agreement and they, who had the power to help me – DID. We always try to pay that forward. If we can’t financially we do it; we do it physically – we hold doors open for disabled people, we go to the post office for someone who can’t, or shop for someone or give someone a lift because they don’t have a car.
Kindness is not intentional – it should come naturally but for some IT DOES NOT. KINDNESS should be ingrained – today it’s not when people are frustrated they are rude. Being rude to the wrong people can result in a really rotten END. It still holds true – be kind to others and they will be kind to you – no matter what fucked up situation they are in – if you’re nice to them with words or just LISTENING – their situation feels small – they want to help you because you LISTENED. In LISTENING you helped them albeit in a small way but help is help.
Plenty of people out there are going to restaurants and writing bullshit on the check. We see it all the time. They even short change the waiter by not giving them a tip. How can people actually do that? Even if I don’t have cash for a tip I’ll put it on the card I’m paying with. I knew someone who I had dinner with who took us to an indian restaurant on 4th St downtown village NYC. They constantly raised their hand and SNAPPED THEIR FINGERS AT THE WAITER & THE STAFF whenever they wanted something. I told them to stop. They did but didn’t understand until I explained that in order to eat a good meal I had to go into the kitchen to apologize for their rudeness. They asked why. I replied “so the staff didn’t pee or shit into the food”. Yes – this HAS happened and I know because when I was that barfly I saw it first hand.
Be kind to others and they will be kind to you. That’s the lesson here. If a person in a small job hates you but you need their help to accomplish something that is SUPER important to you – but menial to them they will do everything in their power (with the small amount of power they have but POWER nevertheless) to screw you hard=and THEY WILL
Food for thought.