Growing up, how many times did we all hear, “You’ll thank me when you’re older?” At the time, we didn’t believe her and we certainly didn’t understand her, but all these years later it’s clear. Mom really did know best.
The lessons a mom teaches are endless. From how to treat others to how to stand up for ourselves, we carried those lessons with us right to the office.
In honor of Mother’s Day, here are a few lessons we learned from the women who helped shape us and prepare us for our careers.
- Be others focused. When trying to make a connection, ask the other person questions. People enjoy talking about themselves, their families and their interests. You’ll never know what you can learn just by asking questions.
- Mind your manners. Some of life’s greatest lessons are centered around our manners. Always greet others, send thank-you emails and notes, make eye contact, hold doors, etc.
- Be a leader. Mom assured us that we are just as smart, capable and visionary as anyone else, so seize opportunities, take the ball and lead the team forward.
- Listen to your teachers. In addition to it being the polite thing to do, mom encouraged us to listen to our teachers because they’re in our lives to leach us both life lessons and lesson plans.
- Stand up for yourself. Each time you defend a project’s results, a recommendation or an idea, you can thank your mom who endlessly taught you to stand up for yourself.
- Patience is a virtue. Decisions take time, sales cycles vary and progress doesn’t always move at the speed of light. Mom taught us to slow down, calm down and find something productive to do while we wait. (Only now we only have to make our beds and clean our rooms if we want to.)
- Look both ways. More abstract, but “looking both ways” applies to our professional lives because we need to view a situation from every angle. For example, your product, competitors, market, numbers, goals, expectations, etc.
- Hold hands. In many professional environments, collaboration is key. Having strong working relationship with your co-workers, vendors and other allies is essential.
- DIY, first. How many times did you ask for help and mom challenged you to try it yourself first? She was on to something. Never enter a supervisor’s office with a problem. Instead, try and solve it yourself to show that you’ve thought through the situation and attempted to reach a solution independently.
Not all of these lessons were welcomed at the time – but looking back, all were appreciated. So, thank you, mom, for all of those days toughing it out with us to prepare us for a richer future.
You were right, we really did thank you when we got older.
Happy Mother’s Day from Sandler Training.