I remember riding with my dad in the car when the conversation turned to somebody he worked with.
I must have been in 8th or 9th grade. I have always struggled with being judgmental, but it hit a high-water mark at that age.
I remember commenting, "I really don't like that guy."
My dad's reply became my gold-standard of professionalism:
"Not liking somebody" is a luxury I cannot afford.At the time, my dad was "the big cheese" where he worked.
Professionals do not allow their personal opinions to interfere with the mission of providing service.
I was naive when I entered the work world. I thought my dad's attitude was the norm, rather than the exception.
I can only hope that my kids are able to pan the gold nuggets out of all the interactions I have with them. I am sure I must occasionally say something wise.