As Good as Your Word?
More and more I find that people casually give “their word”, yet don’t keep it. Giving your word may be something as simple as making a commitment to give you an answer on a business day by a particular date and time. It could also be about making a major business deal. It could involve both keep the timing commitment for a decision on a business deal.
While not meeting the specific timing you committed to may seem a small thing, it usually isn’t trivial to the people who were counting you. I’ve seen major investment deals and corporate licensing agreements get derailed or abandon because one side doesn’t keep the “small” commitments. To quote Mother Teresa:
“Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.”
Too often it seems that people do the opposite and seem to live by the tenet:
Be strong in the lies because it is in them that your faith is.
Check Your Actions
Are you faithful in the small things? Do you keep the small commitments each day? Even the ones that seem insignificant? Do you:
- Make an appointment and keep it?
- Set a time and arrive on time?
- Promise to be at an event or meeting and have no intention of going?
- Verbally make or do a handshake deal then abandon it?
Communicate Early and Often
Of course, there are times when we can’t keep our commitments. As a migraine sufferer, there are frequently times a migraine keeps me in bed rather than going to a networking event. There are occasions when illness, emergencies, or other events change our plans. In those instances, do you extend the other party the courtesy of communicating what has changed? For example, do you
- Call to let them know you are sick?
- Phone to say you are running late?
- Text to let them know your car broke down and you won’t make it?
- Email to say you aren’t going to be able to do the promised phone call today because of X?
- Communicate in some way that you have:
- Been delayed;
- Changed your mind;
- Lost track of time;
- Had an emergency; or
- Made a decision not to do a proposed deal.
One other thing I notice, it seems that sometimes it is easier to disrespect some people than others. For instance, I’ve seen small business owners disregarded when an executive from a big company walks in the room. I’ve seen small businesses and the jobs they create or the products they invent be steamrolled by big investors or corporations.
These situations remind me:
Luke 9:48 ESV
“and said to them, “Whoever receives this child in my name receives me, and whoever receives me receives him who sent me.
For he who is least among you all is the one who is great.””