Ramesh had to shift to a new city on an urgent but temporary assignment. He had to take the charge immediately as soon as he reached the new city. On first day at office he called for an immediate meeting to let all of them know that he is their new boss and he is there to fulfill all their needs so that they can focus on their work. He enquired about their problems and could not find anything significant. He was unsure what to do. He discussed with each of them individually to ensure he builds enough trust so that people can speak their mind. But he could not break the silence and find the truth. Unless he understands the problems how would he solve. All that he was instructed to do was to improve employee morale but without understanding the problems how he would achieve that. There were some kind of fear stopping people to speak.
He was staying in the guest house as it was a temporary assignment. The caretaker of the guest house was also working as peon in office. One day when he went to guest house after a days work he found that the toilet of the guesthouse was locked. He was furious. He called the caretaker and asked him about it. Caretaker without trying to explain took the key our of his pocket and opened the toilet. Once Ramesh came out of the toilet he called the caretaker and started shouting at him. “This guesthouse stinks. AC here does not work properly, the television operator does not show any good channels, you don’t even serve the breakfast hot. On top of it you locked the toilet today. Is this meant to be a guesthouse or a jail?” he said.
Arun the housekeeper as well as the peon said, “Sir, you never complained all these things earlier. I was not aware of these problems. Today because I locked the toilet, you are telling me all these. Till date you were just smiling at me and saying thank you for everything that I did.
I see you were worried in office because you are not able to achieve what you are supposed to achieve. That is the reason I thought of doing this so that you get the clue of what needs to be done.
I am a peon but I am of your father’s age. So I thought of helping you.”
Ramesh’s anger vanished in a moment and he was amazed to understand a beautiful chapter of human psychology. Frustrations need to reach a tipping point before it is expressed to a stranger. You can’t just understand others feelings by asking them. It is either understood by taking them into confidence by winning their trust or by taking them to the end of the frustration limit. Winning the trust takes a lot of time and unfortunately we do not have the liberty to wait in some situations. But this technique of getting the truth is extremely dangerous because it can be considered as playing with emotions and might go in a negative direction if not handled properly.
Caution: Do not use this with your loved ones.
– Stray Dog