Ok – my cats are ticked off and feeling left out because I wrote about the dogs last week. The last thing I need are two angry cats rummaging around my electrical equipment. Here now, are 10 management lessons I have learned from my cats, Tiger and Paris.
1. Whatever you think I’m thinking, you’re wrong!
Have you ever tried to figure out what’s going on in a cat’s mind? Faagetaboutit! Same goes for people at work. The less time spent worrying and speculating the better because we will often be wrong.
2. You are most interesting when you are not trying to be interesting.
My cats are most interested in being with me when I am on a roll and writing under a wicked deadline. I guess I am most fun to be with when I am engaged and thinking. Same with humans! BTW neither is giving me the time of day right now.
3. Don’t you dare say you have a treat unless you do!
Cats don’t fall for the bait and switch as easily as dogs do. Employees have the same keen awareness and expect that if you tell them there will be rewards, there damn well better be rewards.
4. When it’s warm, I purr.
My cats, particularly Tiger, love to lie in the sun, under a lamp, or in my lap. We all like to be in an environment that is warm and comfortable.
5. Cross me and you will regret it!
Aahh, the assault of the neglected. When my Tiger is really unhappy with me, he will pee on the floor – right in front of my eyes! He actually waits until I am looking at him. Employees and peers may not pee in the corner of your office, but they have their own way of letting you and others know of their disapproval. The best strategy is not to provide the fuel for the fury.
6. Trust is earned.
Paris, in particular, is slow to warm up to pet sitters and guests. You have to earn your way into her heart. Cats seem to realize that it is effort to give attention and love. Managers need to earn their employee’s, peers’ and manager’s trust too.
7. A clean place is an efficient home.
Cats are cleaner and more “consistent” when their litter is cleaned daily. At work, we are more effective when organized and not bogged down by clutter. Perhaps cats understand Feng Shui!
8. Catnip – yum!
We all need to indulge a little. Be it a fancy coffee in the afternoon or the leisurely Friday lunch. The workplace should not be so rigid as to keep people from feeding their mind, soul and heart.
9. Don’t insult my intelligence.
Ever notice how you can fool a cat once, but not twice? And don’t even try to feed dog treats to a cat – ppuugh! Cats take pride in making their own decisions and choices. This is true at work too. A work environment that respects our love of choice will be more fulfilling. Like with cats, you will get more of what you want when you do not try to force your wishes on others.
10. Let me help you feel better.
My cats are very intuitive and know when I am upset, sad, or depressed. They shower me with attention and make me feel better. Managers who are open and genuine will enjoy the same care and concern from coworkers. And allowing others to support us feels good!