Just because someone told you so, doesn’t mean it’s true
Early in my career as a Martial Arts Instructor, I found it necessary to supplement my income by taking a day job painting apartments. My boss’s name was Paul. My initial feeling about him was very positive and I felt like he was going to be a good guy to work for.
My first day on the job, Paul partnered me with Toby, who was to be my initial trainer and show me the ropes. Toby seemed like a pretty good guy and I liked him right away. Within a few hours, we became fast friends and when he felt he had my trust, he started in on what a lousy boss Paul was. He told me I should check my time card and pay check, for it wasn’t above Paul to try to cheat you if he could. I felt a bit odd that he was sharing this with me but had no reason to doubt him. So I began looking for signs that Paul had cheated me.
With in a few days of working along side of Toby, I began to see things about him that I wasn’t comfortable with. He padded his time card, and wanted me to do the same. On his work sheet, he wrote down things we never did. It soon became apparent that he was the one that was less than honest. With in my first month of employment, he was gone.
I continued to work for Paul for several years and for quite some time, I kept waiting for that dishonest guy that Toby warned me about. The funny thing is, he never showed up, Paul was great boss, hardworking, ethical and as honest as the day is long. We are great friends to this day. Toby’s initial comments took years to undo and they have served as a reminder to me that just because someone told you so, doesn’t mean it is true.
To this day, I try to remember this when I hear something negative said towards some one else.
Thanks, Toby. Whether you meant to or not, you taught me a great lesson on what not to do. More importantly, thanks Paul for being a great example.