Tall Poppy Diaries

Observations and musings on life as a happy high-achiever (or what the Aussie's call a "Tall Poppy" ). "Unless you choose to do great things with it, it makes no difference how much you are rewarded, or how much power you have." --Oprah Winfrey

Sunday, January 16, 2005


  Tall Poppy Basics Wrap-Up, Part Two

Once again, y'all had such FABULOUS comments on the Tall Poppy Basics posts that I HAD to share with others who might have missed them. These are some of my favorite comments from you on Lessons Six through Eight. Very insightful...AND entertaining....

Lesson Six: Broadminded
From KJ: The "we are right not matter what" disease is spreading at an alarming rate. Or perhaps it could be broken into two different diseases: The "we are right and you are a stupid hick/jesus freak" and the "we are right you no morals hethen". I'm an Independent, so I guess I am a stupid hick/jesus freak with no morals.

From Sam: ...I find that a great way to help that as well is to travel to different places. For me, traveling changed my outlook. I began to respect so many different cultures and religions (even though I don't practice them)...but I found that there is something beautiful in each culture and each way of life.

From La Nina: Broad-minded is nice, but broad-shouldered is better. Oh wait, we're not talking about boys....I feel that the "broad-minded" concept extends much further than politics and religion. Heck, but there are some people who have really strong opinions in the Coke/Pepsi debate. I think we all need to be able to get over our own stubbornness every once in a while.

From Hester: This states why I admire Martha Stewart and haven't let the media form an opinion for me on her or anyone else that I don't personally know.

From Michele: My dear friend P.P. would you mind terribly to get lessons quickly on installing buttons on this site (for these posts) this way you could place a nifty "nodding in agreement" button at the end of each of these posts or in the comment section. Please consider it....

From Pink Sun Drops: ...It becomes an understanding of why they feel the way they do and overall allows you to be more loving and kind and understanding of the person themselves, just as if someone were to take the time to understand you....

Lesson Seven: Charming
From Sam: Being charming and being nice goes a long way. And treating everyone the same. Whether it's the person who serves you your coffee every day , or if it's the VP, I think they all deserve the same level of charm.

From MuzikDude: You're so charming. Am I being charmed? Oh, and is charming synonymous with sincerity? (it should be) because superficial charming is just flirtatious...right?

From JCanuck: ...You so often see expats arrive in a foreign country and act as if the local people are just a step up from being a slave. Some of the things that I have heard people say leave me squirming in embarassment for the person who said it, even though they don't seem to notice just how awful it makes them look. I don't know who it was who originally said it, but being able to tell what sort of person someone is by how they treat people who work for them, rather than how they treat those that they work for is right on the nose.

From KJ: I haven't flown coach in years and years, but I've never bought a first class ticket. Just by being nice to the people at the gate will usually get you a complimentary upgrade, especially if you take the time with your appearance and don't show up in sweat pants.I have three hotels I stay in regularily for work, and at every one I get the "penthouse" suite every time I stay. I know everyone in these hotels from the cleaning staff to the manager, and I treat them all the same-with respect.It goes a long, long way as they say...

From La Nina: A notion that's been handed down in my family is "Show respect for those whose jobs you yourself would not want to do." That respect presents itself as charm.

From Elisa: So, so true. I have been a receptionist and admin. I have been a Sr. Director. I remember what it's like to be the former and deal with jerks who are the latter.Here's what the jerks don't get: look, buster, I never have to let you talk to my boss, because he trusts ME, not you, okay?But being charming to all walks of life is not simply a tactic to get things...it is an acknowledgment that everyone deserves respect and kindness....

From Denise: My parents always taught me (by example) that anyone you run into can become a friend and that no one - NO one - is ever "beneath" you. We're all human beings and no one is immune to a little love and kindness. Charm is the reason that I'm able to smile and make others laugh even when I've had a long day and when what I really want to do is run away screaming.

From Bard Sinister: I've been pleasantly surprised in many situations where a gatekeeper remembered some small act of kindness on my part, and helped me obtain some critical information or put through my phone call over those of others. Equally important, I think, is for each individual to develop their own brand of "charm" on top of the basics.

From Hester: ...Most of the time a good secretary has more pull with his/her boss than most and if you don't respect them, they will make disparaging remarks that will influence the boss' opinion of you. Besides that, you should always treat people the way you want them to treat you!....

From Ex Mea Sententia: If someone had told me these things before I graduated college, I would never have believed them, but after working in the professional world for a few years and then entering law school, I realized that these things are what get people far. ...I treated a horrible boss excellently while other coworkers did the exact opposite. Now that boss is working in a firm that I may want to work for in the future. That boss contacted me a few weeks ago and told me that if I want a job there after law school, I have the connection to get it. All because I treated this person like a best friend....

From JCanuck (who will henceforth be referred to as Cleocanuck. No really... You NEED to see this.): I've often thought that EVERYONE should be required to be a waiter or waitress (or some other service job) for at least 6 months of their life. It's a pretty good lesson in wearing the other shoe. It's also a very good lesson when doing this sort of job in how NOT to judge people on their appearance....

From Cecilia: Three years ago, brand new ergonomically designed computer chairs were being delivered to our lab. Those were for the senior students (I was a freshie phd student back then) and for some of the technical staff, including the senior janitor who was delivering the chairs to those fortunate people. I joked to him "don't you think we measly new students deserve chairs like that, too, especially if we want our backs to be good in the coming years we will be here?". The janitor looked at me and said "You can have mine". I laughed and said that I was kidding around. He answered, "No. I'm serious. You do deserve it. Everyday you smile and greet me. Look at me," he gestures to himself in uniform, "no one here makes me feel more human than you do, so take the chair. It is the best gift I can give you after what you've been giving me every single day since you came here." I tried so hard not to cry at that point. I was so choked up. All I could do was to give him a big hug. Charm IS magic. Especially when you are sincere with it.

Lesson Eight: Adaptable
From Chana: Ok you are right in the CHANGE is HARD but thanks for the reminder that we all need to be more open-minded and flexible. Wait, I just grew a little bit!

From Sigmund, Carl and Alfred: We at SC&A are very adaptable. Chicken or tuna for lunch- we don't care.

From Pink Sun Drops: It's funny, sometimes when you look at a change the right now aspect of it isn't all too inviting, but when you look a few years down the road it's amazing the changes that will come about because you were strong enough to make a change now.

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