Today's Brain Fart: Just one late train can ruin a hundred family meals. Just one case of food poisoning can destroy a restaurant's reputation. Just one stupid comment can sour a relationship.
Your actions have consequences that rarely just affect you.
They seldom happen in isolation, and can have effects that are more far-reaching than you think!
The Domino Effect. The Ripple Effect. The Butterfly Effect. Call it what you will, however, it is a thing that has effects.
Imagine you have a relatively small accountancy firm with 20 employees. Say, Karloine (with a K!), a member of staff has decided to leave and take a new job elsewhere. And you, being a thoughtful business owner, throw her a nice leaving party, buy her some gifts and a nice card.
You also put a soppy message on the business’s social media platforms about what a great employee she was, and how you wish Karoline the best in her new role. That’s a good idea, right? That’s a nice thing to do?...
Yes, it is, however, why didn’t you also do the same for Kolin (also with a K!), another member of staff who retired recently?!...
Putting aside that two members of staff have left recently, your lack of consistency will be noticed. And whilst your intentions with Karoline were well placed, the fact that you didn’t do the same for Kolin is a signal to your staff, and others, that not everyone who works here is equal.
Whether you meant it like that or not is irrelevant, that is how your behaviour will be perceived.
You see, all of our actions have consequences. And even making kind gestures can backfire if you don’t look at the wider context.
What will others think of this? How does this choice affect everyone else?
Have I looked at this through everyone else’s eyes?
More specifically, how does this decision affect my: customers, other members of staff, suppliers, other supporters, “cheerleaders”, friends and family?
Whilst it’s somewhat impossible to do this before EVERY decision, as you would get nothing done, it’s important to pause and consider how certain actions affects others first.
Before you commit, consider how your actions will affect other people.
Remember, your decisions do not happen in a vacuum!
Kallum with a K