“You talking to me?”

There you have it. One of the top ten movie quotes of all time. In this case, it was Robert De Niro’s character in Taxi Driver who coined the famous phrase. It’s also the foundation for this week’s blog.

When a person greets you with a “Hello” or a “Good Morning” or even a “What’s up?” how do you respond? Do you even respond at all? Twice in the last few days, I observed one person’s greeting to another totally ignored. Well maybe not totally. One situation warranted the blank stare response. Both were in customer situations. Awkward. In the first scenario, the sales person greeted a customer and welcomed her to the store. No response; nothing. I happened to be standing nearby, so I asked her
how she felt when people just blew past her without acknowledging her greeting. She said she was used to it; that it happened all the time. Wow.

What’s so hard about acknowledging people? Responding to a person’s greeting doesn’t mean you become their new best friend. It means you recognize them. Greeting is a basic function of communication. Yet, how many times have you passed someone in the hallway and one of you puts your head down and stares at the floor to avoid saying anything? How many times have you walked into a meeting and no one acknowledges your presence? How many times have you entered a store or a restaurant and you feel invisible because no one greets you?

We all have the need to be recognized and acknowledged; the need to feel connected. It just makes the experience that much better. Taking time to acknowledge the people around us may seem like a small thing, but it can make a big difference.

Have a great weekend.

Posted by MJ Thomas

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