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“People will forget what you said or did…but they will remember how you made them feel.”

February is a month that brings up a lot of mixed feelings.

I am not going to get into the stuff that happens in the middle of the month. That’s not my style. I was thinking of getting a little more warm and fuzzy and talk about feelings.

The other day I was sitting in my office, when I decided to take a break from work and think of something non-work related. Naturally, like many people, I jumped on social media to see what video would make me laugh or what post would make me think of something other than work.

When I came across a post that said:

“People will forget what you said or did…but they will remember how you made them feel.”

At that time, on that day, this hit home for me. So much of my working day is spent telling other people how to get out of their current troubles or showing them a better way to do something.

When you look at the world, especially the last 2 years we see a lot of this going on.

I thought of the people in my life both professionally and personally.

How they made me feel and more importantly how I made them feel. What could I do better?

I realized that during my day I am so focused on getting work done, meeting a target, solving a problem, or taking care of errands that rarely do I stop and think…how do I make others feel.

When I am focused, I tend to be short and to the point. My wife often reminds me of this when she catches me in one of these “states” and asked me a question that got a sharp reply.

In that moment, I wasn’t intending to be rude and I definitely wasn’t upset that she asked me for help. My mind was just elsewhere. This reaction though made her feel like she was an inconvenience to my day.

At work it’s the same thing. We have responsibilities, deadlines, and things that just need to get done. We don’t have time to worry about feelings. Why does it matter anyway?

How you make others feel can have a large impact on how you’re perceived and how your company is perceived. This can often lead to great results or unintended consequences.

The worker that feels the company is all for themselves or that their boss doesn’t care is less likely to cooperate when things get tough. For example…when they get injured at work. If you’ve made them feel like they are just another number…they’ll respond in the same way. If they fear that they’ll lose their job because maybe they make a mistake…they become isolated or lie about the events.

When they get hurt, they won’t return calls, they’ll seek out advice from others outside the company, they’ll rely on everyone else but you. They’ll look out for their own interests because regardless of what you say now…they’ll feel that you’re only doing that because you want something from them.

As in anything, it’s the preparation you do ahead of time that is the key to responding to negative incidents that arise in your company.

You can have all the documents you need, but if the person won’t come in and complete them because they feel you’re only serving yourself…what good are those forms?

If you have modified work, but the worker continues to see their doctor and told they can’t return…problems and costs rise.

Who needs this headache?

If you make others feel that you are there to serve them.

They will respond in kind. In my travels, I have found that the common denominator is people in any organization want to feel like they’re listened to. That someone in the organization listens to what they have to say. That they are understood.

I’ve realized that any breakdown in relationships, whether personally or professionally, usually started with how they felt because of communication issues. That the other person wasn’t listening to their concerns.

This then resulted in a breakdown that led to each person looking out for their own interests.

What’s a quick way to listen?

Set your own interests aside for the time that you’re speaking with this person and listen to what they are saying. Try to understand the meaning by telling them what you heard them say and then work together to find a solution.

The claims process. It means listening to what they have to say and responding appropriately.

Our course How to Interview a Worker & Witnesses Post Incident (WCB) does a great job of discussing and expanding on communication strategies.

Whether or not you have a WCB claim, it’s a great resource to improve your communication style.

Learn more about Anthony Butkovic and WCB by visiting:


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