DG is my man to go when it comes to cleaning my house. Though his name is not DG, I prefer calling him so in truncation. He has been a subject of learning for me and often I used to think that he should be a role model for most employees in organizations.
Great lessons sometimes are taught by modest people around us.
DG is one person who I can leave the housekeeping of whether it’s office or home. DG has been associated with me since 2008 and had ensured that he is in touch with me wherever I had gone from him since 2008.
Lesson 1: He simply taught me the importance of being in touch!!
I couldn’t get him a suitable job in a couple of places where I worked in the past, simply because he was not that fluent in the English language. However, I managed to get him an office assistant job recently and I was amazed at the fact that he struggled to learn the language and speak reasonably well on English.
Lesson 2: if there is a will, there is a way. You need to struggle consciously if you need to achieve something.
DG comes home often if I need him to just tidy my home, rather a capsule spring cleaning. He is amazing at work. He seemed to have a clear thought process and I noticed that in the way he designs his workflow. He would start from the kitchen and move towards bathrooms at the end. No one taught him this, he seemed to have understood the workflow well. His movements are logical. His planning is superb.
Lesson 3: It’s important to have a smooth workflow design if you need to perfect the art of work.
DG is meticulous in his work. I see him passing his hands through the corners and leaving no dust or grease on the surfaces go untouched. No one has taught him. He does it by himself. There is no need to instruct him. He involves himself well in what he does. It’s interesting to note that he arranges things in an order. He feels it important to keep things in place and he lifts hard stuff off the surface to clean the base. He notices the grease on the top of jars and washes it off. He is a man of attention to detail.
Lesson 4: attention to detail makes your job near to perfection.
He sees me lying on the sofa watching TV and very mindfully avoids cleaning that room until he finishes the rest. He keeps it to the last. I guess he knows that not only his work is important, but he needs to be mindful. Unlike any other housekeeping boys, cleaners, he takes due care to not disturb and focuses on what he needs to do without bothering me much and allowing me to do what I have to do. It is quite inspiring to note that he is not only mindful about his work but the other beings near him as well.
Lesson 5: be mindful.
I see him mopping the floor spotlessly and with passion for cleanliness. I guess he knows that he needs to leave an image of him on the floor. He is not a management graduate, not an MBA from those premier institutes. But he knows that he needs to have passion for what he does. He knows the importance of engagement. He understands the need of willfulness besides being skillful. How many of those employees who work in your organization embraces their work? How many of them feels an emotional connection to what they do at work? I have seen love for work in this boy and wished many had at least a 1/10th of what he had. We come across many talents across our organization and the one with that love for work, passion for perfection, the joy of doing something great, desire to do more, mindful delivery of actions are rare.
Lesson 6: be passionate and involved at what you are doing.
Once I saw DG covering my trash bins with a plastic garbage bag where I normally use the ones which we are left after shopping in supermarkets. He seemed to have bought these on his own, feeling the need to keep it for those trash bins in living and bedroom. Perhaps he would have felt that those bags looked neat and aesthetically better. He used to keep dozens of them on the bin and then an open one wrapped around inside the bin, making sure the bin is a storage for the bags to be used later. He didn’t go to schools like some of us, no colleges, and no university doors that he stepped into. But he knows the importance of job enhancement, job improvement, job advancement, job enrichment. Perhaps he must have critically looked at what he does and felt the need to improve. He taught me the importance of not just doing your job, but to see what other opportunities are around in enhancing your job standard.
Lesson 7: look for opportunities within your work for improvement. Raise your work standards.
DG at the office is a favorite of everyone in the team. He has great observation skills and he knows that if I have someone in my cabin, he doesn’t need to be called, he comes on his own asking the guest for coffee or tea while he is already serving water. He knows what each of my team likes to drink and he makes their coffees and teas with perfection. He knows the personalized cups of everyone and ensures they are served only in their cups. He knows the timing and serves people without being asked. He goes to the extent of making ginger tea if he notices anyone with a cough or cold. He is not from a hospitality school, but mindfully being of service to others seemed to be in his blood. Though my team and I invite him to be a part of our pizza or burger party in the office, often I see him being mindful of others by serving others, clearing plates etc. he is an inspiration for everyone who has to learn how to be engaged at work. He is an excellent example for those who dismay work. He teaches us how work can never be tiring by just embracing it all the time. It’s interesting to note that how men and women act when they are in deep love and the principles of engagement is the same when you love your job. To those who work in a Company that doesn’t motivate them, I say that loving your job not your company keep you at best always. It’s important to never let yourself swallowed by the negative vibrations that the companies inject in you but encourage yourself and find happiness in doing your best at the work that you have. Find the happiness that you derive from doing your job well and best as an invaluable reward.
Major part of your life is filled with work, so why hate work and ruin your life. Love it the most. The only way to do the best of your job is to just love doing it. If you haven’t found something that you love it. Keep looking, you will find it.
Lesson 8: love your job and not the company.
A visit to DG’s pantry amazed me at the cleanliness that he maintains and how hygienic he is in handling food, beverages, his coffee machines etc. he says that everyone’s health is important to him. He seemed to be having a clear vision of being of service and mindful. You don’t need to attend strategy workshop to decide and script your vision statement. It is the inner desire that you have to bring it out, the very purpose of your being is your vision. Finding that very purpose is the missing element in many of today’s leaders. There is no need to break your head on designing that long vision statement. How tragic is that today’s CEOs and directors struggle to keep their focus in vision? I was blessed to have worked with a CEO back in India where I and he had spent weeks deliberating and digging into our inner desire and thoughts to come out with what we needed as a vision that drives us in the business of wellness which we were setting up. I was just an employee and we understood that it doesn’t matter what I desire but what the founder desires as his need. It was my CEO and founder who came out with this action provoking statement as his vision for the wellness hospitality venture that we were setting up in India. A beautiful vision statement came up as “our lives will be an expression of our core belief to be of service and enhance wellbeing”. This was entirely coined by the CEO who had to conceive and drive the work culture. I learned from him and my hero in this article DG that if you need your work culture to be driven by your vision, you yourself need to own the business, own your work and find the inner desire inside you.
Lesson 9: have a beautifully designed action driven vision brought up from your inner self for quality delivery of your work.
DG is all set to wind up his work at my home and move on. He packs the garbage to throw on his way out and says goodbye to me. He often denies to take some token from me but on insistence he takes it. I buy him food and give him some from home as well. I just feel that anything that I give him is less for what he is. His humility impresses me. I missed mentioning something that touched me. He showed me a beautiful neck chain that he bought for his daughter who he is expected to visit during his forthcoming vacation. I was touched at his act of wanting to share his joy with me. It is so important to show that concern, care to participate in your employees joys and you will see them coming up to share their joy on their own, making yourself as someone whom they think is important in their life. Your employees will do their heart out if you genuinely show an interest in them and if you participate genuinely in their joy.
I guess I am deviating from what I want to say in this snippet. Apologies if I had deviated your mind from it. I was mentioning about humility at work. I saw no expectation in DG after having done a superb performance in housekeeping. He probably feels that a job that I fetched for him is more than what he has done for me. He has really made me small by denying my token. I insisted and he graciously accepted the same first time when he came to attend my home. Thereafter I reward him consistently and he takes it with a simple, humble smile. Amazing to see how humble he is in accepting a reward, no matter how much and what it is. He taught me that being humble and having no expectation drives quality of your performance. Expecting reward sometimes could kill the quality of work consistently as absence of reward can kill the performance. This is a state of mind that many won’t have in today’s competitive world. Everyone expects to be rewarded. Be humble and do your best at work, rewards will follow if not now, in future.
Work hard, stay humble.
Lesson 10: be humble and do your best at work.
Thank you all for reading and I am sure we all have someone who teaches us daily by just being themselves. Perhaps we are blind to these learnings most often and speed us to universities and colleges to learn these simple principles of management and performance.
Written by Binu Prasad.
Note: I have taken the vision statement of vanaretreats from their website for the purpose of mentioning it in one of my snippets above and is not my own words.
Image: courtesy google.