Before you begin…
There is never a right time to do the wrong thing, and never a wrong time to do the right thing. – Lou Holtz
Read the following scenario, completing the session questions where indicated.
You wake up early both excited and a little nervous. Today is an important day for you because you have an important interview for a job with a company called DGU. You have heard great things about the company and admire what they are doing in your industry. You give yourself one last look in the mirror, straightening and checking before you leave home. You know the reputation of the company is “buttoned down” and they value things like punctuality. The job is located 30 minutes away on a light traffic day.
Due to heavy traffic, new road construction, and various other traffic obstructions, you find that you are arriving only a few minutes before the interview is scheduled to take place. To make matters worse, finding a place to park is much harder than you had expected. You find a spot that is open and are about to turn in, when another car cuts you off and takes the spot.
It is easy to relate to being late, navigating around traffic hindrances, and dealing with inconsiderate drivers. Considering the number of issues you have encountered so far on such an important day, how do you think you would have reacted in real life to these situations?
How do you normally deal with stress and frustration? How well does this work at resolving your problem? Does it affect your state of mind?
Finally, you are able to find a parking spot, but it is a bit farther from the office than you had hoped. As you are crossing the street to get to the building, you glance at your phone to check the time. If you hurry just a bit more you will make it to the interview on time. You congratulate yourself, but as you are looking down you bump into a woman who was ahead of you, knocking her down.
What do you do now? You know that if you help the woman, you will not make it to your appointment on time.
- Keep going because you don’t have time for this.
- Ask her if she’s OK, then keep going.
- Ask if someone can help her because you are running late.
- Stop and help her, making sure she is OK before you leave.
- Other ___________________________________________
What factors led you to make the choice that you did above?
You get into the building and are waiting for the elevator. As you do, you have some time to reflect about all the choices you have made so far. You do your best to clear your mind and get yourself straightened up before getting off the elevator.
You approach the receptionist and let her know who you are and that you are here for an interview. The receptionist tells you, “Thanks for coming in. You are right on time! Unfortunately, Mrs. Smith will be a few minutes late. She apologizes for the inconvenience but will be with you as soon as she is able. Would you like a bottled water while you wait?”
A few moments later the receptionist you hear the receptionist say, “Oh, Mrs. Smith, are you OK?”
You look at the door and see the woman you had knocked down earlier. She makes eye contact with you briefly and then heads into the office.
Which of the options below best summarizes your thoughts before you knew that the woman you had knocked down was your interviewer?
- All that worry about being on time, and now she’s late.
- I hope she’s OK.
Based on your interactions with Mrs. Smith after you had knocked her down, how do you think the interview will go? Why do you feel this way?
How would the situation be different if Mrs. Smith were the one who cut you off to get the parking spot?
Reflect on the quote at the beginning of the session. What do you think Mr. Holtz meant by this? How can you apply this quote in your personal or work life?