Who is the Most…
If you are a regular reader of this space and have a fantastic memory, you might recall that about a year and a half ago, I wrote about my children having a discussion about which of the 5 of them was our favorite child. Over the past weekend, a similar discussion happened, but this time the topics were “who is the most…”.
Joanne and I tended to stay out of the conversation and let the siblings do the talking, and as parents it was a fascinating conversation to listen in on. One of the questions was who was the loudest of the kids. Some argued that it was Jenni, as she was also toward the top of the list as the most outgoing. Others thought it was Ted, who is definitely not as outgoing, until you get to know him. Each side made valid arguments during the debate, and then they decided to get an outside opinion. First they asked us, but we remained neutral. Ted decided to text his girlfriend to get her opinion.
She has been around us long enough to know that loud was an appropriate adjective when describing our family interactions. She agreed that both Jenni and Ted were the loudest, with Ted bringing home the “honors”. Some in the group thought she might be a little biased in her opinion. The conversation then changed to who was most like mom and dad. Everyone was in general agreement that daughter Katie was most like her mother, but when it came to who was most like me, there was more debate. There was general agreement that son Ben looked most like me, although the Friedman genes were prominent in all the kids.
Different children said they displayed different traits of mine, and I don’t recall which was voted most like dad. Oldest child Emily was generally the “winner” of the most aware of other’s feelings. The next topic turned to who was most picked on by their siblings. There was general agreement that most every child got teased on many occasions, but the youngest might have been picked on the most. They couldn’t agree because Ben was most worthy of the teasing or if it was simply because he was the youngest. Joanne chimed in that she was definitely picked on the most when she was growing up because she was the youngest.
This conversation lasted almost all of dinner, and included the following; most dramatic, causes the most drama, most aloof, most trendy and most sensitive. Sometimes these discussions were moved along by who was the loudest (see above), at other times text messages were sent asking for outside opinions. As I sat back and listened, I thought that I have been in meetings like this before.
As small business owners and managers we are responsible for conducting meetings that move toward quality decisions. We sometimes are convinced by the loudest, or the one who we think is the most experienced, or perhaps by the one who is most passionate. Is that the best way to decide? One of the problems with our “who is the most” discussion was that there were no parameters or definitions to help guide the discussion. When we are in meetings, we need to have those thoughts in place to help make the best decision. Does it fit our mission? Is it best for the customer, company and employees?
Surprisingly, the Friedman family discussion that night didn’t include who was mom and dad’s favorite child. But just like last time, we don’t have a favorite. However we definitely have opinions on who is the loudest, picked on, etc.