I was reminded recently of the benefit of candor. I was having a conversation where a customer was telling me about some issues in the quality of our service that we needed to address but also affirming their commitment to us long term. Candor rightly applied allows for accelerated growth because the truth is laid out in the open–imperfection and all–and steps can be taken to improve. With this in mind, ignorance is not bliss, because ignorance of imperfection will only generate more of the same, leading to stagnation and mediocrity. In this sense, Ray Dalio’s adage that, “Pain + Reflection = Progress” holds true. Pain, hardship, turmoil; if reflected upon and learned from, will result in growth. Patrick Henry said it this way:
“Looking forward into life and those prospects which seem to be commensurate with your talents, native and acquired, you may justly esteem those incidents fortunate which compel an exertion of mental power, maturity of which is rarely seen growing out of an uninterrupted tranquility. Adversity toughens manhood, and the characteristic of the good or the great man, is not that he has been exempted from the evils of life, but that he has surmounted them.”
While I don’t enjoy being criticized, the truth is, no one is perfect. Criticism is rarely inaccurate because we all fail. So, while I may not enjoy the truth about myself, I should be grateful that I’m sitting across from someone who is willing to help me grow because that is what truth-telling does if we have the humility to hear it.
We at Gould Design Inc. are constantly pushing to improve. Because of this, we welcome these conversations with our customers. We want to be better, more accurate, more reliable, and contribute more to our customer’s success.
General Manager – Gould Design, Inc.
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