There are few places that have less sympathy than the boardroom. Cut throat, me first, step on whoever you have to in order to make it to the top, usually rules the day. The waiting room in a hospital is just the opposite.
I spent most of Wednesday in a waiting room while my dad had his surgery, and I went away asking myself . . . “Why Can’t the Board Room Be More Like the Waiting Room?”
The waiting room is no less stressful than the boardroom. Actually it can be even more tense. Business politics pale in comparison to bypass surgeries, breech births, and organ removals.
Yet around the office we convince ourselves that work is bigger than life, which can lead to people acting like jerks.
In the waiting room people serve each other. Everyone cheers for all the others in the room, even perfect strangers. How much money you make, the color of your skin, your title, car and neighborhood are all irrelevant.
People share newspapers, family stories, and no one demands to hold the remote control. Strangers offer to go get a cup of coffee for you and you trust them to do so.
If you want to be a better leader in your work place, just act like you would if you were in a waiting room and watch what happens.
The waiting room . . . a great place to learn relational leadership.
What other places can serve as a classroom for relational leadership?
adapted from 3.18.11 post
Great insight Randy, I have been in both the board room and the waiting room and while many elements are the same I have found one key difference-it is the person you are there for. Board rooms are replete with individuals who are there to find ways to serve their own needs, further their agenda and find a way to have the spotlight turned on them.
The waiting room is full of people who are deeply concerned about another. Their time is spent in those small, and large, activities that demonstrate their understanding and care for others.
Finally, the board room is often full of “let me show you what I can do”. The waiting room is a place where many are asking God to do what only He can do.
Life is about who you choose to serve. Your choice has a huge impact on how you experience your time on this earth and how others experience it as well.
So true David. Thanks for the great comment!
Outstanding RG!!! Hope your dad is doing better. I know that he is in the hands of the “Great Physician”!
Thank you so much for sharing this blog. Wow is all I can say this morning after reading this today. It has been so hectic with my wife being sick with a hospital acquired infection and have 2 new adopted kids in the past 6 months my life has changed significantly.
My wife’s grandmother who lives with us fell last night at my son’s football practice and hit her head hard, she will be 93 in 2 weeks and has lived with us for almost 3 years now. I was stuck at work and was not able to get there so my wife had to take him. She hit her head really hard on the pavement and had to be taken to the hospital. They have found something wrong with her heart along with her head contusion. I sat in the waiting room for a bit and experienced what you were writing about.
This is how I try to lead my team at work and it pays off with great rewards, not only people who appreciate someone who cares for them but they are always willing to go the extra mile when needed. Thanks for making my day today and helping me keep the focus. You, your Dad and family are in my prayers.