Most platitudes (and that might mean half the advice posted on Linkedin) are inaccurate for most people. People are individuals, yet we insist on treating them as categories and as the contents of some drawer somewhere, in which we dump them like nuts and bolts, We define commonly entire generations, levels of employees, geographies, genders, and so on.
Here’s my blanket statement for today: Treat people as individuals, the same way you’d prefer to be treated. That advice is as ancient as the prophets of old, but there’s a reason for that: People respond as individuals, not as members of some group to which you’ve assigned them.
I think the Golden Rule is a good start but not everyone wants to be treated like I do. So I work from the Platinum Rule: Treat others as they want to be treated. I think this speaks to the more individualistic nature of people you talk about with which I fully agree.
I think the point is to treat people and you would want to be treated: with respect, kindness, and tolerance. I think that’s unarguable. I don’t think it means to treat people according to each’s behavioral predispositions.
I was lucky enough to be raised with this principle deeply ingrained via my country blood. I took it for granted until advancing my career to a point where such over-simplification and categorisation of people was demonstrated by senior managers of large organisations. It now pervades the far ends of each political spectrum who garner more than their fair share of media air-time. Our information-age seemingly has these people overwhelmed at the thought of facing the complex reality that every individual is different and can’t be dictated to with a monochrome perspective, style or message. Ironically, I think a certain peace, serenity and simplicity is felt when following your principle on this Alan. Thanks for another great blog. Huw