“Everyone is a storyteller dying for lack of an audience.”
Of anything I learned from Dick Bolles
, that’s come in the most handy.
I’m embarrassed to admit this, but it took me a few weeks to ask Darrell about Band of Brothers
--the television miniseries he finally got around to watching on DVD. I learned a lot, and Darrell loved sharing it.
It reminded me that just because you’re inches away from someone pretty much around the clock, there’s so much you don’t know.
Remembering how much people love an audience helps no matter what job you have or what role you play. If
you keep in mind what "audience" means, that is.
If you work in customer service and you have an unhappy customer across the counter, being a good audience doesn’t mean arguing with her complaint. You may not be able to fix her problem right away, but you’ll create a different problem if you give the impression the problem is her.
If you’re the unhappy customer, you have an audience in the person who’s helping you. Ignore at your own risk the look in his eyes from being dressed down by the previous unhappy customer. Show a little empathy, on the other hand--and get some back so fast you might not believe it.
If you’re a parent, watch your child’s eyes glaze over when you try to teach her a lesson by talking. Better to let her watch you and your husband work through a problem, in a blanket of respect with a few belly laughs thrown in. She might actually look forward to growing up if she learns by your example the fun is only just beginning.
You can also let her learn by example the power of this statement: “Please, tell me more.”
Is there a sweeter request in all the world?