Commitments

I was going to my parents home last weekend. I use to take the highway more because the fact that it us more secure than for being the speediest way to get there. About halfway, the traffic slowed down and what use to be a half an hour trip became an hour and a half. The traffic jam hadn’t ended when I left the highway, and there was no kind of indication nor alternatives signalled by the highway operator, but I must pay the toll charge anyway. They did not comply with their obligations, nor for the commitment of “free toll if delayed more than x minutes”. Off course, the rest of my family was taking the dessert at the time I arrived, ans I had to lunch alone the “very very well done” barbecue… I was not pissed off, but very dissapointed.

You and me rely on assumptions all the time. Those are based on some tacit and some explicit commitments from other people we interact all the time. It would be very ineffective if we don’t do it that way. Just imagine calling the bus company before leaving home everyday to ask if the bus service is working, just to confirm. Or checking the voltage on the wall before connecting any device.
Sadly, not all the commitments are made with the same level of responsibility or thought. Some people really work to accomplish their promises, some don’t think about what they are compromising for and make promises not taking into account if they have or don’t have to comply them.

Even some promises can be categorized as “white lies”, mainly because nobody plans to honor them, but they are, at least apparently, harmless. Or it can be a plain lie, period.

Everyday I rely on the people working with me doing their chores at a professional level. I supervise some of the projects personally if they have some impact on other areas, and leader a small number of them that can have a major impact in cross company areas or from a bunch to all the clients. The order of importance is based on the impact over others, as the others use my commitments to do promises to third parties and the impact can multiply by a big number.

Not going to very big commitments, we usually act and organize our lives, and l am talking now about the work life, around the promises of our coworkers, providers and clients. Getting on time to meetings, sending the email with the information we promised or give our people the free day we offered when we needed them to work very late that “budget night” last month are just very quick and dirty examples. Some of them will trigger new actions, some of them will build confidence about our word and honor and, probably, give us the opportunity of giving out very well backed up promises in the future.

I am tempted to promise you I will see you soon, but it is impossible to honor that promise.

Regards,

    Diego :D

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