Lacking an attitude of forgiveness in the business world could be worse than a cancer in your body. By Gary Shotton #000173
By Gary Shotton
Hello, my name is Gary Shotton and you’re listening to teachings and stories that we hope will inspire better business, we’re going to talk about the game today the subject of forgiveness. And I’m going to give a little kind of my idea of what definition would be, it’s not any Webster’s or Wikipedia definition but how I view that then. I’m going to tell you for sure three stories that were a little bit ugly when they happened, and I had to forgive and so we’ll just jump right into this now forgiveness. You know your child spills of milk and you can be upset for a minute but then you forgive them clean it up hug them maybe discipline a little bit. But you know the next day you don’t hold that grudge against them, last week you spilt your milk, two weeks ago you spilt your week your spilt remit milk, remember last year when you spilt your milk would that be foolish because you forgave them even though they made a mistake well you know some people do things in our business lives in our careers.
And they affect us personally and if we hold on to those offenses and we become offended, and we’re not and we continually be offended over something that happened days and weeks ago. It’s not healthy and it’s going to affect your business future, it’s one of the things that’s going to happen is you’re not going to lose your drive any energy you’re going to waste time dealing with something you should have gotten over several days ago. Not months ago, days ago there’s ways to get over things so the ability to not be offended for sure over any length of time that’s what I would say we’re talking about it now. I think I can kind of tell you how I would judge if I were still offended, I’m not offended well if I lose any sleep over it in the middle of the night. if I’m wrestling about it thinking about it for sure a little signal to me is if I wake up in the morning the first thing on my mind in the morning is something that somebody did to me somebody offended me.
Then I have not forgiven them and maybe there’s other ways but that simple ways to me another thing that I could judge if I’m in the presence of that person and I’ve been offended for whatever reason maybe rightfully so they did something wrong to you you’ll hear my stories but if you’re uncomfortable avoiding them won’t meet with them you’re still offended you haven’t forgiven them well here goes the stories this is back when I had a moving and storage business I was working hard at keeping the bills paid and hiring people it was a tight margin business we’re moving furniture somebody moves from house to house be new location and we would have our workers go in and pick up the furniture and move it to the new location and I had a right-hand person that was wanted to be the leader the manager and I was going off to develop a new book of business in my case it was many storages so I’m focusing on expanding and going into many storages.
He will run the existing business but unbeknownst to me he had made some bad personal deals wasn’t to do with our business. His own personal things and he had lost a lot of money and he decided the best thing to do was to move out of town, well the problem was he didn’t tell me he embezzled fifteen thousand dollars from me went down to the bank without me knowing it. Cashed it now he has fifteen thousand dollars in his hand he hires my employees since we’re in the moving business illegally moves him across state lines to his new house in another state. Guess what when I found out about it on Monday morning, I was ticked I was mad and I had no intention of ever forgiving him for that. Because that hurt, it hurt because I thought we were friends it hurt because not only he left but also his wife which was working for us. Also, which means more two thirds of my management team it was him his wife and me so two thirds of my management team is gone.
Unbeknown this was not cool I’ll keep it short but over time about a year later I heard from him, and he asked me if I would forgive him. So, I told him this story I said you know it took me about six weeks till I got over the bulk of it and I realized all it was hurting was me so, I have forgiven you, but I have no reason to restore you to any level of friendship particularly immediately. And you know I have no intention of developing a friendship but the only way we would be friends is over time you proved yourself to be changed you wouldn’t do that again. Never seen him again, let me tell you a story number two I told you a minute ago that I was wanting to develop many storages and so many storages for those where you store other people’s goods. it was a kind of a good business to be in it fit well with the moving and storage business and so I had reason to contract an architect. I won’t name that architect it doesn’t matter, and they had tons of knowledge and I didn’t have hardly any knowledge.
So, I was resting in their knowledge to guide me through this process and create the architecture so that the engineer could design it. And then we could put it out for bid and we could build these many storages well, what I didn’t realize is that he over designed, he didn’t have a good target and he ran up the car on the mini storage by making it too fancy. But what I didn’t realize either that in the contract he wrote some wording that were I’ll call it the small print the small print says I’m thinking for his services. I owe him ten thousand dollars but the way the small print said I owed him $40,000 that’s a big difference and the project didn’t go. I had to pay for the engineering I had to pay for soil sampling I had to pay everyone and then I get a bill from him for forty thousand dollars not ten like I thought. Well shame on me I should have read the fine print, but I know he takes me to court, and he sues me it’s in the newspaper this person against Gary is being sued for forty thousand dollars guess what.
I wasn’t happy I didn’t get very excited, and it took me a while to forgive him but once again I was not sleeping well, I was worrying about it I was thinking about it first thing I woke up in the morning I said you know the only thing this is doing is hurting me I’ve got to forgive him and to this day I’ve seen him many times. Several times we have a friendship I’ll walk up shake hands and be friends with him but not intimate close friends. Number 3 just two months ago three months ago I have someone that worked in our company here he’d work here seven years, he was in financial problems because of something his wife has did in another totally different business. His financial problems bled over into his personal actions, and he stole twenty-five hundred dollars’ worth of my tooling and took it down to the pawn shop and pawned it for two hundred and fifty dollars is all he got well fortunately we found it we caught it we brought him in.
We discussed it he didn’t admit it took a while it’s another whole teaching you know I’ve learned he got hurt but I forgave him right away, but he doesn’t work anymore his offense cost him his job even though I’m not holding against him. like l I would something that would offend me in another way he doesn’t work here though, and he wouldn’t work here again unless we had some confidence that he had changed. So those are three examples of me having to forgive people and the process of time I’m getting a little older and in the process of time I would advise anyone anywhere to don’t hold on to offenses. Get over it go on with life forget about it don’t necessarily reestablish this person in your life as your best buddy your closest friends.
But over time you can do that but certainly interact with them don’t feel that you’re going to get over this. if you’re continuing knowing and being concerned about it and like I said to begin with one of the big reasons, is you are spending mental effort mental energy you’re wasting part of your life every day you’re wasting minutes and hours. Because this is gnawing on you it’s not worth it it’s like you paid once for the lesson and now, you’re paying it repeatedly. it’s over forgot about it go on it is not going to benefit you to hold that offense well I hope this helps it’s not one of those cheery happy kinds of lessons, but I hope it helps you. We’re here to inspire better business we hope this inspires you to think through processes especially in this case business owners are key managers you have a way of making it through this with a success. But you’re not going to make it if you’re holding an offense you got to be willing to forgive.
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