“Good manners sometimes means
simply putting up with other people’s bad manners.”
H.Jackson Brown, Jr
I always worked with the public. First, as a hairdresser then managing a card and gift shop and many years in furniture sales. For the most part, people were nice, polite, and pretty easy to get along with. Of course, there were those few that could ruin a day in a matter of minutes if I let them.
When I was a hairdresser it was easy to weed out the difficult clients who never seemed pleased with my efforts. If they didn’t move on to another stylist on their own I simply told them I thought that perhaps they would be happier with another stylist. Usually, that did the trick and they would see someone else. But sometimes they would talk with me and we would come to understand each other better and continue our relationship with more patience.
Card and gift shop…most customers were pleasant and easy to get along with. Every once in a while there would be a problem but nothing big. After a couple of years, I quit because I was bored with the job and to be honest my good manners were not all that good at the end.
Furniture sales I loved. I learned a lot and had great clients. There were those few that were difficult but I understood that furnishing a room or house or office can seem overwhelming to some. For me, it was a fun challenge for the most part and I enjoyed the interaction with clients. Of course, there were problems and bad days with dissatisfied customers but rarely were their problems ones that couldn’t be solved. It just took time and patience and a little more work. It also helped that the management and staff were wonderful to work with.
In my working life, I did learn that sometimes bad manners happen and the best thing to do is not get upset and make the situation worse by responding with bad manners. When I was young, I started working at 17, I wasn’t the best-mannered person and often was offended when someone thought differently than me and bluntly let them know what I thought.
As they say…with age comes wisdom.
I learned to treat others as I would like to be treated
and to meet bad manners with good manners.
Makes the days, and people, nicer and more pleasant.