One rule not to follow

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The Golden Rule.

How many times have we heard it in our daily lives? From a young age we remind children that the best way to be a good person and get along with others is to treat them the way you want to be treated.

But let’s think about this for a moment. If you’re around people right now – whether at work, home or riding the bus  – take a quick look to your left. And then to the right. Do you think those people feel excited by the same things that excite you? Or that you all share the same frustrations? We aren’t carbon copies of each other. Why do we feel the need to always remind people to follow the mantra of the Golden Rule?

In his Financial Post article, Want to be liked as a leader? Stop treating others as you would want to be treated, Craig Dowden asks the question: Wouldn’t it be better if we started treating people the way they want to be treated? Dowden uses the wedding registry as an example of how we put our own wants and feelings above those of others. I have been guilty a time or two of wanting to be praised for purchasing the perfect gift that my friends and family didn’t know they wanted until it was placed in their hands instead of getting them something I clearly knew they wanted.

To be better leaders and team members, we need to swap out the “golden rule” as our default mode. The more we learn about different personalities and their accompanying needs, preferences, traits and characteristics, the better we will work together.