We pass by so many people every single day. We don't pay attention to them. Everyone has a story behind. And every story has much wisdom and many lessons to it.
And we usually keep to ourselves. We don't explore people. We think it's intruding. But the reality is, in most cases, people won't mind a friendly approach and a few questions. We are designed to be social. God created people to co-exist. To enjoy sharing and being together. To help each other. To learn from each other.
Recently I had a small experience that got me thinking about all that. Someone I meet a few times a week in the restroom. His office is in the same floor. I always pass by his quiet office and wonder what kind of business does he do under this "web services" title. I'd even say to myself, this office looks like they're not doing any business in this tough economy. I even went on wondering why won't the owner just have a home office and save a few thousands a month in useless rent. He doesn't seem to be making any money any anyway!
I was wrong! I remembered what a friend taught me once, a lesson that was passed to her by one of her school teachers. The lesson is simple, and it goes like this: "ASSUME... makes an ASS of U and ME!!!". What a genius remark!
I met him as usual. We say hi and hello, how are you and how's it going. Fine thank you. Blah blah blah! But that day I just was in the mood for some real questions:
- How's business going?
- Actually it's going very well.
- Wow, really! So you do web services? What's that exactly?
- We shoot videos for companies that wish to have some Youtube presence.
- So you shoot the videos in the office?
- Yes. And we're trying to expand and add some space to the office. It's become too small.
Wow! How wrong was I. I assumed things by what I see from outside! I was feeling sad for this company and wishing they just save the rent and move to a home office instead, telling myself I'd do this smart move if I was in their place! Why worry about an expensive Chicago downtown location when you can create your web sites from home!
But I knew better after this short conversation! Their web services didn't include making websites at all! And they were expanding their office, far from thinking about moving to a home office and save the rent! I also learned that Youtube is creating new business opportunities. But most importantly, I learned not to judge anything when we look from the outside!