when listening can save you time… even when you already know it all

I hung up the phone, paused, & realized I had just witnessed a complete display of ego in myself.

We were in the process of switching payroll providers for Bacana. I had already set up a (relatively simply structured) client on this new system a month earlier, and I’d been running payroll on another system for quite a while. So of course I already had it all figured out.

Of course.

As I worked through the new format during setup (which I insisted I could handle all on my own), I encountered a few differences in the structure that stumped me.

So I called the customer service team. And spent a large part of the call in a place of frustration that this new system wasn’t built exactly as I wanted it in my imagination. And though I expressed appreciation several times for the very kind woman who was helping me, I also went on a mini-tirade about the system being bloated and too rigid for the needs of a small business like mine.

Oh, the ego.

You know what would’ve avoided all of this? If I had just listened. Just accepted their help fully at the beginning instead of insisting that I already knew what I was doing.

The simple act of accepting help would have saved both them and me time, frustration, & a few emails & phone calls. And the very kind Vanessa (the woman on the other end of the call) would not have had to meet my venting session with polite but insistent silence.

So the next time someone offers to help, I’m going to pause. I will let my fear of imposition and my “self-sufficient” ego have their say in my head. I will look at them fondly as dear teachers on my path. And then, in the space that follows, I will consider and answer. And just perhaps, I will say yes and then listen.

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