To be ourselves or not to be ourselves?

Spring is officially here!

Be Yourself - Everyone else is already taken

…although, this year there didn’t seem to be much difference between winter and spring – bar the ongoing political circus in the news.

Watching a recent speech by a potential US presidential candidate, a few interesting questions came to my mind.

How can we:

  • Achieve the results we want while remaining authentic?
  • Meet others’ expectations while staying true to ourselves?

Compromise is essential to every (working) relationship. Yet it means that we can’t expect a what-you-see-is-what-you-get strategy to be effective 100% of the time – especially not if you are a politician.

After all, how tolerable would most of us be if we were always ourselves?

This is particularly true in a global working environment made up of people from different backgrounds and cultures. My experience in the Czech Republic, for example, has taught me when to tone down my outgoing, spontaneous personality in order to work more effectively with those around me.

Undoubtedly most of us prefer to keep our behaviour in line with our own beliefs and values. Yet a multicultural work environment demands that we leave the familiar behind while accommodating the values and social manners of those around us. That forces us to put things into perspective and really ask ourselves what we are trying to accomplish.

What you will find is that a compromise in behaviour and attitude is often far more productive than letting your natural inclinations determine everything.

I wish you a very sunny and happy Spring 2015!