This is how it’s not going to work

You have to teach people how to treat you. This is done in a few different ways:

  • The respect that you command (body language in person, confidence in voice on the phone, etc.)
  • The respect that your work commands (are you well-known for your art? that matters)
  • Drawing lines as necessary

It’s easy to apply this to situations in the workplace and relationships with others, but it’s equally true in dealing with customers and mechanics and even strangers.

Does this mean you need to walk around with a chip on your shoulder or on alert for the moment you’re disrespected? Of course not. On the contrary, I think a large part of the proper perspective involves ignoring things that others might get upset over.

Once you reach the point where you’re focused on your art and goals and making progress, it’s easy to determine what’s a distraction and what’s worth fighting for.

Willie Jackson is a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Consultant & Facilitator with ReadySet, a boutique consulting firm based in the San Francisco Bay Area. He is a frequent writer and speaker on the topics of workplace equity, global diversity, and inclusive leadership. Connect on LinkedIn or get in touch.

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