Characteristic #37: Unmatched Bedside Manners

By | November 26, 2013

Miss Manners Judith Martin[November 26, 2013]  I vividly remember reading the Miss Manners column in our local Texas newspaper back in the early 1980s.  What drew my attention to them was her ability to give such common sense advice about how to have good manners under difficult social circumstances.

She was good at telling us how to handle “old Uncle Billy” who was such a bore at family gatherings and on many such special occasions.  Manners, she tells us, are the oil that lubricates social interaction and Miss Manners never let us forget that fact.  Those manners are invaluable.

Bedside manners, not unlike the physician’s interaction and communication with a patient, are to be cultivated to ensure we “connect” successfully other another people.

An unmatched bedside manner, the ability to engage people in a genuine way, is an important character for a senior leader.  President Bill Clinton has this trait.  He is comfortable most when he is around other people and he has a way to make them feel important and that he cares about them.

Senior executive leaders should possess a first-rate bedside manner to ensure a smooth social interaction with clients, customers, and frankly with anyone connected to their organization.  There is a good book called Bedside Manners: A Practical Guide to Visiting the Ill by Katie Maxwell.  While the book is clearly about sick people, it is also about improving people skills and worth reading with that in mind.

Senior leaders frequently are in awkward and difficult social situations that require more than a simple technical understanding of their field or basic social skills.  A practiced bedside manner will go a long way to helping achieve the mission.

A senior leader will also experience plenty of challenges in their position.  By having a bedside manner that works well with people, those challenges will be easier to overcome.



Author: Douglas R. Satterfield

Hello. I provide one article every day. My writings are influenced by great thinkers such as Friedrich Nietzsche, Karl Jung, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Jean Piaget, Erich Neumann, and Jordan Peterson, whose insight and brilliance have gotten millions worldwide to think about improving ourselves. Thank you for reading my blog.

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