Why don’t people return phone calls?

Why don’t they acknowledge e-mails?

Why do they cancel meetings at the last minute?

I know I’m generalising, but people who heed the unwritten laws of common etiquette are few and far between…a distinct minority – a dying breed! Every day more and more people go over to the uncouth side of business where it is quite acceptable to act as though you are so darn important that you simply don’t have to return phone calls, answer e-mails or meet a scheduled appointment on time...if at all!

What has happened? Why are egos so distended? Is it simply that many of us don’t have the common courtesy to be professional? I just can’t accept it.

There are of course always refreshing exceptions: I have to say that I was ecstatic when the Chairman of one of SA’s biggest and most successful organisations met with me on the scheduled date at the scheduled time! Furthermore, the person was the epitome of a 21stcentury leader! What a privilege for me.

There are several other admirable, high achievers who have indeed reached the top of their organisations who have also given me their time (as scheduled) and I am grateful and encouraged. I believe that the most valuable thing you give another person is your time – you can always make more money, but none of us can make more time!

…and so I have to hypothesise: is it only those who are disciplined and respectful of others who reach the top?

I would welcome any comments – please write to me and give me your views at tina@coachtina.co.za.