We strive to act with Noble Intent, assuming that everyone we interact with has Noble Intent. We emphasize trust in every relationship and give them the benefit of the doubt. Here are some things we do to uphold our belief of Noble Intent in others:
Collaboration is more than an empty workplace cliché. It is how we accomplish things together to achieve our common goals. Most of you probably picture collaboration as people working together in the same room simultaneously, and that is one version of it.
- Synchronous collaboration simply means that we work together at the same time. We may or may not be in the same space, so tools such as Zoom, Teams, Webex, Google Meet, or any other online meeting platform may be involved.
- Asynchronous (literally meaning not at the same time) collaboration can happen when several parties have access to contribute to and edit the same document, set of documents, or project but do it when it is convenient for them. Platforms include Google Workspace, email, Slack, or Dropbox.
We believe that collaboration is essential for several reasons:
- It helps bring the people at Parker Technology together with those we work with
- It helps us solve problems
- It helps us learn from each other
- It boosts morale
- It helps us open new channels of communication
- It makes us more efficient
- It leads us to higher employee retention rates
We want to be the video customer experience platform of choice for the parking industry. That means that we need to create human connections that work. Not only do we bridge the gap between our clients and their parking guests, but also between all of the stakeholders in our organization.
In any arena where people interact, there are bound to be disagreements. How those disagreements are dealt with is crucial because conflict can lead to dissatisfaction, anxiety, and resentment. Unfortunately, in a workplace, unresolved issues can negatively affect productivity and prevent the accomplishment of necessary goals. Because we assume the best of everyone as we strive to act with Noble Intent, we focus on fostering trust. What aspects of conflict resolution skills help with this?
- Active listening: This means that we seek to understand each other’s perspectives rather than simply waiting for a chance to express our own. Active listening requires an open mind – and means that we give others the benefit of the doubt.
- We separate the issues from the people: We have to trust and believe that everyone has a noble intent, so any disagreements must focus on issues only.
- Assertiveness: There is a huge difference between aggression and assertiveness. There is nothing wrong with asserting a truth in a way that casts no aspersions. Just as employees need to clearly articulate their ideas without fear or trepidation, others need to learn to receive those ideas without taking umbrage or feeling attacked.
- Empathy: This is not the same as sympathy, which can be received as pity. When people have empathy for each other, they treat each other with compassion and understanding. Who wouldn’t want that? If we are all treated empathetically, we will all feel valued. This is important in a workplace because it means employees are more likely to express ideas or to receive the ideas of others with open minds.
- Conflict can lead to feelings of stress: Stress in the workplace can escalate; it makes people want to avoid situations. As you can imagine, this does not help us accomplish our goals, either individually or as a company.
- Conflict resolution skills are transferable: We don’t use them only when disagreements arise. If we have been practicing active listening, empathy, and dispassionate differences, we should be able to head off conflicts before they arise with our well-honed open communication skills.
All of these conflict resolution skills can be applied to our parking guests. Like us, they desire to be heard, understood, and empathized.
A recent Forbes article cites research stressing the importance of gratitude. Gratitude is more than a term to be stitched on cushions or featured in a speech delivered from a Sunday pulpit. It makes both the person doing the thanking and the person being thanked feel more content. This is crucial in the workplace. For example, employees who are thanked are twice as likely to be highly engaged at work as those who are not. They are also three times more likely than those who are not recognized to feel that their job has meaning and purpose. Of course, giving thanks, either to employees, colleagues, or customers, has to feel genuine. You will lose trust if you give empty lip service to your appreciation. Take the time to find legitimate reasons to express gratitude.
At Parker Technology, we foster a culture of saying thanks and giving credit where credit is due. It is one of the best ways we know to create human connections.
Seeking First to Understand
No, we didn’t come up with this ourselves: seeking first to understand is one of Steven Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. There’s a reason this book has sold more than 25 million copies and why it was the #1 most influential business book of the 20th century – it makes sense.
Very simply, the core value of Noble Intent means that it is essential to understand and recognize not only what people are saying in conversation, but also what they are feeling. (This is called empathetic listening.) Whether you are dealing with family members, friends, coworkers, or clients, you should begin without preconceptions and listen intently. Only when you truly understand the other person’s message should you reply. Don’t problem-solve or plan your response until you have fully taken the time to understand.
At Parker, we understand the importance of following through on our core values. Everyone on the Parker team is striving to act with Noble Intent and is operating from the perspective that others are also acting with Noble Intent.
Read more of our core values blog series here.