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Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

Posted by claire_de_luna (My Page) on
Wed, Jul 9, 08 at 10:40

Or was it always that way and I just hadn't noticed?

I've bumped into a couple of examples recently that made me wonder about this, which has me thinking. It's probably less about mediocrity, and more about poor service/attitude/job performance that has become defined as mediocre because it's so prevalent. For example...the office manager at my doctor's office (whom shall always be thought of as ''paperwork girl'') held me hostage at my last appointment for an hour, until I filled out a different form with my name and address In TRIPLICATE with information that had not changed and was already in the file! Never mind that I was in pain that was making me go blind...Then, when I suggested that I sign and date the old information, she told me no, she was ''updating'' the file which was a policy of their office, and filling out the form wasn't her job! That one p**sed me off so much I wanted to spit nails. (Pain will make a person see many colors!) I called her back later and told her I had done many jobs including hers, and Never in any instance was it Ever appropriate to say to anyone, ''It's Not My Job.'' I had a few choice words for her and her attitude like pedantic, insidious, passive aggressive, lazy, and non-professional. (I'm sure she would have had to look some of them up! Oh, no...that's assuming that she would care. I forgot about whom I was speaking.)

I had to go in there yesterday, and was surprised my office visit was going as well as it had until I went in for blood work and was chastised for not sitting straight in a chair with my 5 foot frame, intended for someone 6 feet tall. "No one else has a problem with it.'' I am amazed by this attitude. After many similar experiences, it seems to me there's a certain toxic infestation with the people in this particular office, which has grown so bad that I've decided it's time to make a change. Sadly, I like my doctor, but having to deal with the people in the office isn't worth it to me any longer.

I ask you...does it seem that what used to be considered ''poor'' is now ''mediocre'' and the new normal?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

claire, I'm so sorry to heart about how you have been treated. When you are in pain the last thing you need is more hassle. There is a similar thread over at the Decorating forum on the discussions side - it seems poor treatment at doctor's offices is something of an epidemic.

What would have happened if you told Paperwork Girl, "No, I don't feel well enough to fill this out"?

Since you like this doctor I suggest you write or call him and let him know how bad things are getting in his office - he probably doesn't know. I would not contact his office manager as s/he is probably part of the problem. Mediocre will only become the new standard if we accept it.

Nicole

Here is a link that might be useful: Thread re: troubles at the doctor's office


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

Nicole, I just read the thread you posted to, and have to say, it's terribly familiar!

I wish I had said what you suggested; unfortunately, when someone is in pain, you don't know what's bugging you until the situation has escalated to something else. In this case, it was a power struggle. Paperwork girl went and ''told the doctor'' I refused to fill out the paperwork like she was twelve years old, yet neglected to tell her it was information that hadn't changed and already in the file. I didn't even begin to sort it out until I had to go get some x-rays from an office I hadn't been to in years, and had a completely different experience.

You know, after the dr's appointment, my husband offered to take me to lunch. The one thing we ordered was too greasy to eat, and when we mentioned it to the waiter, he whisked it off without a word. He did send the manager (to deal with us), but we were surprised by the fact he never asked if he could bring us something else. Wouldn't that be the first thing you'd ask? I don't normally think of myself as difficult, yet it's something else when the waiter makes it appear that we are a problem for him. It seemed to be the ''new normal'' at least that day!


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There actually seems to be a dichotomy of what's normal. I find that mediocrity (or worse!) is rampant, but at the same time, I am continuously surprised at some excellent, bend-over-backwards service out there.

I just got back from lunch with a friend at work and when the waitress brought our bill, we asked her to split it. She said she could only split it down the middle (our meals were different prices). We both sort of looked at her dumbfounded so then she said, Ok, I can split it if you tell me the amount to put on each credit card. So I promptly said, OK, here's my card, mine was 13.25 + tax. She put her hand on her hip and said something like, Oh, come on.

I was incredulous. I reacted... (wish I'd just kept my mouth shut) and said, Are you saying that I need to figure out the tax for you?? I was on the VERGE of asking for the manager when she took the CCs & bill and said, OK, I'll split it. She came back and guess what? She'd switched our amounts. I now owe my friend a few $$ to make up the difference. YUCK. What was her point to cop an attitude like that??

On the other hand, last night, I went to dinner with my sister. Before bringing the check the waitress simply asked, One check or two?

It irritates me NO END when they refuse to give you separate checks (or make a big deal out of it). Why?? When so many restaurants are more than happy to do it? It's just a small customer service that's really easy to do since everything is on computer! And I always always tip bigger when they do it.

There are just some places which consistently give excellent service, and you can always tell because they're packing them in. This place had about 50% of their tables filled at lunch time today. And their food is quite good. So the difference has to be service.

I agree that you should let the doctor know. I'd probably switch anyway. But a letter... well a letter might not ever reach him. I'd call.


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal? more

I meant to give an example of really good service...

When my other sister was here visiting a couple of weeks ago, the three of us went out to one of our favorite TexMex places. This waiter was incredibly patient as my visiting sis asked a million questions about the menu. He was incredibly attentive throughout the meal and just gave really good service.

When he brought the bill, he simply brought us 4 bills: 3 were each of our dinners individually itemized for separate bills, and the fourth was the entire bill. So, no matter which way we were paying, he had it covered. No fuss no muss.

This place consistently has good service, and great food. No question about it. And there's always a wait for a table. I wonder about the managers at places like the one we went to today with the waitress with attitude, don't they ever go see what's going on at the competition? Don't they wonder why the line is out the door at the restaurant just down the street while their place is half empty?


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May, I find what happened to you in your first post, more ''normal'' than not. Sadly, what happened to you in the second doesn't happen often enough! Like you, I'll gladly leave a larger tip, especially when there's pleasant service (without attitude).

My dh and I visited a neighborhood restaurant two weeks ago that I'd heard was good, but left after 15 minutes when we couldn't get our server to take our order! There were only two other people in there who had finished their lunch, which apparently they'd been delighted with. The server was in the room, arranging things, wiping down tables, adjusting this and that, but never once looked our way, or at least not until we got up to leave.

I'd love to have a good experience; I think I'm ready for one!


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Claire, what you've described in here is EXACTLY the reason I spend so much time on line. I'm sick and tired of so called professionals serving up a "crap sandwich" and expecting people to eat it with a smile. To me, it's just not acceptable any more, and if you think I'm forward in here, you ought to meet me in real life. I don't even think twice about telling someone where to get off if they're trying to blow sunshine into a place where the sun SHOULDN'T shine.


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Bill, I'm so grateful you haven't lost your illustrious voice of reason! Isn't that what we all love about you?

Meanwhile, our car went back to the body shop today for the THIRD TIME. This time we got a loaner, but I don't care; I want my car back! The ''mediocre/poor job syndrome'' is alive and well and living in my backyard. How best can I kick it out of my life?


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The trouble is that when we (the collective we) come across mediocrity we tend to shrug our shoulders and accept it as just the way things are. If more people did actually "vote with their feet" and stop patronizing businesses with bad service things would change.

Why DON'T we walk away from bad service? Why do we accept it so easily? The only answer I can think of: the price.

Service adds a certain cost to any product. If you want to walk into a store and ask a lot of questions about their merchandise and get intelligent answers, you're going to have to pay for that. The same store can save money and sell things cheaper if they hire inexperienced unknowledgeable warm bodies who are just there to ring up the sales.

So the store with the extra service/extra cost can't survive as people inevitably go down the street for lower prices. And the more this happens, the more we come to accept no service or bad service as the norm.

But as I said above, I do run into excellent service fairly regularly, and inasmuch as it is in my power, those are the businesses I frequent.


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

May, I actually do walk away from bad service, after voicing my feelings about it! Sadly, like grains of sand, I just feel there are three others waiting to take my place, once I leave.


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Ya exactly. That's what I meant by the collective we. There are very few of us out there willing to permanently scratch some places off of our list due to bad service. And although I do it as much as I can, sometimes you almost don't have a choice because there's just no place left to give the good service.


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

Why DON'T we walk away from bad service? Why do we accept it so easily? The only answer I can think of: the price.

That's it exactly, and why I've always told people in here NEVER make your decision based on a lowball figure. It'll come back to bite you almost every time.


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

Well, it looks like a few of us are playing in the same ballpark! May I say that I've missed you all?


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

Well, don't miss us no maugh!! Stick around!! Put yer feet up a spell!!


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

Interesting.....I spent the better part of today asking myself why a good number of the people who work in my department seem to be quite satisfied putting forth the minimum amount of effort required to get by - delivering mediocrity - if that.

I'm in charge of customer service at my company and I'm passionate about providing great service. At my company - and probably most - people are pressed to do more with less. You have to work hard to do a good job - sometimes you have to go above and beyond the minimum requirements of your job. I just see so many people who don't seem to want to work hard - they don't hustle - they don't have fire and passion. They seem to be striving to attain a level of ease and comfort in their work - which in my opinion isn't a great thing to be shooting for in corporate America (since we do have to compete with places like India and China where people are extremely driven to create a better standard of living for themselves)

And I'm talking about career professionals - compensated competitively - this is not minimum wage work. Of course most if not all of these people are young enough to be my children (I'm 51). I keep wondering if it's the "all about me" generation or something about our company, our leadership or ??? Having worked a few places over the years I can say it's a great workplace but I don't think these people have been around long enough to know that....

Maybe I'm just getting old and crotchety....


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

Ok Bill, my feet are up and I'm taking a load off. I could start all kinds of conversations, so you might be sorry!

Gibby, I know. My husband left his last job because the corporate culture seemed poisoned. He managed to hire a great group of people who did exceptional work because they cared enough to excel, and his boss likened their hard work to ''fairy dust!'' (Oh boy...and a boy he was; see the problem?) Sadly, I do believe it's generational, and a cultural problem. Who created it? I would daresay our generation did, by giving our kids too many material things. They didn't really have to work for much, so why should they now? The entitlement issues I see in people these days leaves me cold.


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Claire - good to hear your perspective on the generational thing. I agree with your take on it however since I don't have kids I generally keep quiet about it - who am I to talk about how kids have been raised!! But as DH and I have observed different friend's and relative's kids over the years, we've both wondered out loud how some of these kids will ever adjust to the work world where everyone does not exist to serve them and their wants and needs. I've seen some kids whose parents "served" them their whole life and did everything possible to make the kids lives easy, comfortable and difficulty free - and expected others to do the same. You can imagine how the idea of working hard to provide great service to others might be a foreign concept. Of course not all young people are this way.

It makes me wonder about the long run for our society. Our company outsources some work to India - some of our management team has visited our "employees" in India. I was talking to one of the people when he got back and his comment was that most people in this country have no idea of what's going on out there. These people are extremely driven, hard working and industrious and they are undertaking everything - they're not bitter and resentful because they have less. Makes me think our society will in time decline because we are no longer driven by a strong American work ethic. It seems like we've reached the stage where people are driven to make life easier for themselves - or if it is relatively easy - it should be lavishly easy. And if it's not, it's not up to the individual to work hard to make it so - someone else should make it easy or make problems go away. And we elect a government that represents this thinking to run our country. I think other societies are growing stronger in this respect and eventually will advance and leave us behind - probably not in my lifetime - and maybe not at all if we wake up to what's going on. So far though I think we're kind of arrogant, ignorant and in denial about this idea....


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

Gibby, I agree with you wholeheartedly. I don't have kids either, so maybe in some way it's easier to step back to observe what's happened. Like you, I wonder about our society in the long run. I probably shouldn't say this out loud, but I don't think it's entirely a bad thing that we're struggling a bit harder to fill our gas tanks, and think about why food prices are going up. It seems when things are hard, we actually have to try then to be more innovative and creative to make...improvements! I also know we will be okay, because I know how to conserve since we haven't always had it so easy. I hear you (and agree!) about electing a government that represents this type of thinking to run our country. It's scary, isn't it? Sadly, teaching responsibility begins with the young, and there has to be those who know ''responsible'' enough to teach it!


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

Interesting.....I spent the better part of today asking myself why a good number of the people who work in my department seem to be quite satisfied putting forth the minimum amount of effort required to get by - delivering mediocrity - if that.

Gibby, it's simple, unfortunately. The general mindset is the very same in all types and all LEVELS of business from roadside vegetable stands to worldwide corporations-- Give the least amount of product or service required, and get the most profit possible for it. Now, that in itself is bad enough, but from a business standpoint only, that's just good business (the unfortunate part is that usually the ONLY way businesses look at it). It gets even worse than that when the people you're dealing with try the business equivalent of slight of hand, giving what LOOKS like a good deal, and ends up being a whole load of ....um.... nothing.

As my father once said, if you by a dollar's worth for ten cents, what you've bought probably isn't worth a dime.

Maybe I'm just getting old and crotchety

I'll join that club. Heck, the only helper I've ever had that could last with me is my stepson, and there've been times even with him that our relationship was the only thing that stopped me from sending him down the road! Other than him, the longest a helper has ever gone with me was 6 months, and I had one that lasted 3 hours before I told him to get out of my sight! I don't settle for mediocrity from myself, and I refuse to accept it from anyone who works for me. I don't expect ANYONE to be perfect. But I DO expect them to try their best. Anything less is unacceptable.

I could start all kinds of conversations, so you might be sorry!

Claire, Claire, Claire. Have you EVER seen a time when I was at a loss for words? Shied away from a conversation??? Heck, I hang out alot over in Hot Topics now, just so I have someone to argue with!! (I'm the token conservative over there!) :-)


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

Bill, you made me look! (In Hot Topics, that is...a place that I should stay out of most certainly. You're right about being the token conservative...as if you really were!)


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

I've seen some kids whose parents "served" them their whole life and did everything possible to make the kids lives easy, comfortable and difficulty free ... Which in my opinion is a huge disservice to any child.

My kids are 18 & 20, and believe me, I've seen it. I'm a FIRM believer in encouraging independence in kids but I'm in the minority. Some parents seem to think that their kids' success in school and in life is dependent on the parent doing all the work for the kid. I spent practically all of my kids' elementary school years in shock over this.

Specific examples:
When my older son was preschool age, we used to go to the library weekly for their kid program. We watched a short film, then they read a book to us and then the kids got to do an art project, all on a related theme. I can't tell you how many of the moms did the art project FOR their kids. Can you even imagine? I'm talking using those fat glue sticks to paste one piece of contstruction paper over another, or coloring something, you know PRESCHOOL stuff. But these moms felt the art had to be perfect and anyone who's been around the under 5 crowd (or even older) knows that their perspective and coordination just isn't condusive to that. We walked away with a lot of crocked, out of the lines, off center, wacky art. And with a lot of pride in "I did it myself". Many (too many) other kids walked away with perfect artwork and frustration instead of pride.

When I was a cub scout den leader, one mom always insisted on doing the projects for her kid. I was always trying to encourange her son to do it himself, emphasising that there was no wrong way, just that he should try and do his best. Poor kid, she just would NOT let him. They dropped out after a couple of months. That poor child had sat through too many meetings bored, watching his mom have all the fun.

For homework, I was always willing to help my kids by answering questions or helping them learn a concept, that sort of thing (till they got too old for me to even understand WHAT they were doing!! LOL) But never never to do the work FOR them. When they were in elementary school, they were requried to do a science fair project every year. Now, my kids' projects weren't great, the displays weren't that neat or elaborate, but you guessed it, they did it themselves. Not so with other kids. I remember one year a mom running through the cafeteria where the projects were displayed shouting out, "We won! We won!" Hmmmm... WE won... wonder who did the work on that first place project!

I've got more examples but you get the idea. I too, always wondered how these kids would cope in college and in the working world. I guess the answer is that they are still catered to and indulged. We actually have a lot of young people working in my company and I haven't seen a lot of that here, maybe because we're very careful whom we hire.

The saddest part of all of this is that I guess these people seldom if ever get that wonderful satisfying feeling of accomplishment that comes with achieving something they've worked hard for.


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

Lowspark, I'm glad to hear you weigh-in on this, especially since you have kids. (I didn't want to be seen as judgmental, since it's a behavior based observation, although I do believe as Gibby does, that not all kids are like this.) Yes, some parents are so competitive, they would rather do the work for their little darlings, than teach them how to stand on their own feet (and do their own work for them.)

How sad that mother you describe didn't see the opportunity to share time with her son, encouraging his self-image by allowing him to complete a task while having a good time, all the while teaching him a lesson in autonomy. It seems to have been a personal need for her, however! It's too bad that's a lesson she's still learning, since she obviously has no capacity to pass it on to her kid.

A young friend of mine (in her 30's) didn't seem to realize she hadn't enforced the word NO to her (then) 3 year old. Instead of expecting her to behave, the little dear was pleaded with, soothed and given all kinds of attention when she threw a daily temper tantrum. When I suggested to her that nipping that behavior now would help her immensely when Little Princess became a teenager, she finally started thinking about how to best deal with the situation. I remember her telling me (after giving her daughter all kinds of sugar that day) that her daughter could have anything she wanted as long as she would just get along with her! When I told her I believed the kid's blood sugar was too high from too many sweets, and that crashing/burning resulted in temper tantrum fallout, I think she finally got it. (I don't think she believed a three year old was capable of going to dinner with friends and sitting quietly without having a fit.) She cut out excessive amounts of sugar after that and began actually thinking about the food she was giving her daughter. Oh my! When I complimented her on LP's behavior and mentioned that she seemed much improved, a friend of hers told me that was a (very) back-handed compliment! Oh brother...if she'd only witnessed what I'd seen, she might have agreed with me. Everyone's a critic, especially when they don't bear witness to the problem.

Oh yikes! I try not to worry, but it's hard to teach common sense when kids aren't required to have any because their parents have none.


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

Yes, some parents are so competitive, they would rather do the work for their little darlings,

Exactly! You know there's a lot to be said for not doing so well at something and learning from that. It's a very important life lesson, and it's why kids are NOT born already knowing how to do things. Those kids did have to fall on their butts many times before they learned how to walk.

the little dear was pleaded with
OK, you hit on my extreme pet peeve. I simply cannot abide parents pleading with their child. It's ridiculous.

her daughter could have anything she wanted as long as she would just get along with her!
You know, it's great to have your kids get along with you, especially when they're teens. But the best way to get this to happen is to be their parent when they are toddlers, not to try to be their friend. A parent's role is to discipline and teach a child, ESPECIALLY in the first five years when their personality is forming. Trying to "get along" with a three year old is like trying to pass a wet noodle through the eye of a needle. Ain't gonna happen. Tell the kid what to do, and make sure s/he does it. Even if it means, gently but firmly, taking the child by the hand and forcing them to do the task. Yeah, I've done that. I don't mean hurting the child in any way. But physically enforcing what they've been told to do. Believe me, this works. Once they realize you mean business, you don't have to force them anymore.

don't think she believed a three year old was capable of going to dinner with friends and sitting quietly without having a fit.)
Another pet peeve. I hate hate hate being in a restaurant with a kid running around. At best it's rude and a nuisance. But at worst, it's dangerous. I mean, servers are walking around carrying heavy trays filled with plates of food. I've witnessed some near misses. Kids ARE capable of sitting still through a dinner. Mine did. They weren't perfect though and had their bad days. When they couldn't sit quietly I took them out. They had a chance to calm down before going back in or else we left. I did sacrifice some outings along the way, but again, once the child realizes you're fully prepared to follow through on your threats, they very seldom need to test it again.

I read a lot of books on how to raise kids when I was pregnant the first time. Every one of them said the same thing. Kids WANT limits, they WANT discipline. They will test you repeatedly to make sure there are limits. Make sure you do what you say you're going to do, and don't threaten things you can't follow through on.


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

EXACTLY!

Whew! Now that we have that worked out...


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

Some parents seem to think that their kids' success in school and in life is dependent on the parent doing all the work for the kid.

Lowspark-- It's not just the parents. I lived in Homestead, Florida for three years in the mid 90's and it was EXPECTED of the parents to help their kids do homework and school projects!! When I questioned the teacher about it, her response was it's the school system's way of getting the parents involved in their kids' education. I told the teacher I stopped doing homework in 1975!!

The last straw was when my second grade daughter was required, for her homework, to make a musical instrument. When she told me about this, I thought she was talking about something simple, like a coffee can as a drum, or something similar. She told me no, it had to be something that she could play an elementary song on. So I called the teacher, and her response was that the child was to tell me what to do, and I was to "help" her put it together. About the time I almost took my finger off trying to notch a bridge for guitar strings, I said enough is enough. I ended up with a conference with the principle the teacher, and the guidance counselor, because I refused to go along with this garbage. Give a SECOND GRADER, SECOND GRADE WORK!!

When I was a cub scout den leader, one mom always insisted on doing the projects for her kid. I was always trying to encourange her son to do it himself, emphasising that there was no wrong way, just that he should try and do his best. Poor kid, she just would NOT let him.

BEEN THERE. When my son was in cub scouts, we STRESSED that it be the kids that do the pinewood derby cars. The fathers could supervise, but the boys would have to do it. We had one car come in shaped like a cigar, with four holes drilled from one end to the other, and filled with molten lead. You're going to tell me ANY father let a kid do that?? not to mention the whole overall design of the car was WELL beyond anything a child would come up with!!

it's hard to teach common sense when kids aren't required to have any because their parents have none.

Very well said.


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DM is having those experiences at the doctor's office. She, too, thinks the doctor was unaware of the front-room problems. The situation has improved with some staffing changes. (Our doc offices, on the other hand, are great.)

As for discipline and parenting, here is my perspective, from the other end of the mountain. DS is 4 and DD is 2. We believe in independence, limits, consequences, responsibility, and getting injured. Some days, in public, I have a lot of difficulty parenting by my standards. On at least two occasions, I've tried to buy something a child has broken in the store. The clerk hasn't allowed me to, to the point that, if I insist, I'm making a scene. Other people rush to my child's help if s/he is mildly injured. Many don't expect a child to be able to do things him- or herself. Frankly, when I discipline my children in public, most people look at me askance. It makes them nervous. (Nothing corporal: time-outs, talking-to'es, apologies to store and/or restaurant managers).

DS and I had a big scene a couple of weeks ago in which he had a tantrum, threw his shoes, and I confiscated them. We were leaving the mall. I expected strangers to try to intervene; surprisingly, they did not. I was nervous, in anticipation of someone trying to "help."

---

One other note: I know parents who are trying to create no-praise environments for their children, on the theory that too much praise for mediocre moments warps the child's drive to achieve.


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

One other note: I know parents who are trying to create no-praise environments for their children, on the theory that too much praise for mediocre moments warps the child's drive to achieve.

Although I don't believe in praising mediocrity, I don't think this approach is right, either. If kids do something right, They should be praised for it.

I get a kick out of this-- people I've worked with have always teased me about the way any time I ask a helper for something, it's always accompanied by "please", and when the task is done, I thank them. To me, it's just common courtesy, as well as a way of letting them know they're doing what I want them to do.

Right now, my stepson Adam is starting to put his OWN crew together (yep-- I think I've lost another one!), and I was over to his friend's parents' house the other day where Adam just installed his first compass rose on his own, and is in the middle of tiling their kitchen. He was in the middle of doing the floor when I got over there, and everything with his two buddies was "please" and "thank you". I got the greatest kick out of that!! As I was getting back into my truck when I left, I was thinking to myself-- maybe he WAS listening!! :-)


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cate, it's good to hear there are some good office visit experiences out there. My DH just changed doctor's offices, and he was amazed by their different attitude. They also have a walk-in clinic 7 days a week, and this seems like it might be a good option for me as well. I'll be looking into it for certain. When he made his first appointment, they called and welcomed him to their clinic, and he said the general attitude was pleasant while they talked and joked with each other. That is above and beyond anything I've experienced at my doctor's office, so I was pleasantly surprised to say the least. As far as parenting goes, two year olds are difficult for everyone! All you can say to yourself is ''This too shall pass''. Most people will acknowledge that kids at certain ages are a challenge for anyone, especially in public! You just keep on doing the best you know how to do...it does get easier...before it gets harder again! (One day they'll be teenagers, which is another type of challenge completely.)

Bill, I agree with you. (I really like Please and Thank You; in fact DH and I use these expressions daily with each other.) Isn't it nice to see what we ''teach'' passed along? I taught my dog to physically move (stand up and change her ''spot'' which is usually in the middle of where I want to go) when I say, ''Excuse Me!'' I love that she jumps right up to move; she still wants to please me.

I also like that your stepson has acknowledged (whether intentionally or subliminally in his approach to working with his own crew) how your mentoring has made an impression on him. Apparently he thinks it's a good approach! Pat yourself on the back Bill, for training a tradesman whom people will want to work in their home. It's a big job, and we're glad you're doin' it!


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I have NOT read all of the responses because your post hit a raw nerve of mine and I wanted to respond immediately. I am a health care provider and own my own practice. I would want to know IMMEDIATELY if one of my staff was rude to a patient (as you indeed experienced). It makes no difference how much a patient likes me or how good they think I am. If they find my front staff rude, I may never see them nor know what kept them from coming, or made them leave. I have seen a number of new patients who told me they made the appointment BECAUSE my front staff was so nice to them. Please tell your doc about your experience. S/he should welcome the comment if they want to maintain a successful practice. In my opinion, there is NO excuse for such behavior.


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

dccnm, I have told my doctor, many times in fact. The last time, they called me to see where I wanted to go to have my labs taken. My response to them was that I was done...the time to have done that was when I was there! I did my part by fasting, drinking plenty of water so they could find a vein, and showed up on time for my appointment. I got a ''new'' girl who smugly informed me she'd been taking blood for nine years, but when she started roto-rooting the needle around in my arm instead of sticking me again, I was DONE with her. It's not the first time that's happened either, but it certainly will be the last! (I also quit getting my lab results in the mail for some reason.) They've had plenty of chances to do better, with plenty of input from me. I really don't think they care! I know I don't...


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

You are absolutely right then to move on to a practice that has the time and inclination to care for you with respect. I just don't get it. I tell my students and staff that if they always treat someone as they would want to be treated they'll do just fine. Why practice medicine or run a business like that?

I'm sorry you've had to experience that treatment. Hopefully you live in an area that offers plenty of other good providers from which to choose for your future care.

And I don't think it's mediocrity. I think it is absolutely a lack of respect and civility. What has happened to our society? I was just on vacation outside of the country and as often happens when I leave the US, I was struck by how friendly everyone was and how quick to smile. And not just to tourists but their countrymen as well. Being pleasant just makes getting through the day easier, doesn't it?


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RE: Is Mediocrity the new Normal?

I think it is absolutely a lack of respect and civility.

It comes down to the following statement-- "I don't give a crap about anyone, or anything, other than myself, with the exception of my paycheck which better be hand delivered to me on payday."


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