By: Unknown Author at the Culture and Manners Institute

It was the dreaded day of the big layoff. One by one we were called into the office of a vice president of a company that had just purchased our company, to be let go by a man  we did not know. I had heard that a few people before me had lashed out at the him with angry words, some had burst into tears.

When it came to my turn, he looked like a man who had been through it. Instead of issuing a parting shot, I smiled and said to him, “I enjoyed my time here and I learned a great deal. I am grateful for the experience and I thank you for that.”  He was pleasantly surprised. We chatted for a minute, he smiled, shook my hand and I went on my way.

Though I left the company as a “coordinator,” I returned a few months later to interview for a managerial position. One of the people I had to interview with was this same vice president. When I walked into his office, he smiled and said, “I remember you.”  I got the job.

Build bridges, don’t burn them. Be nice to everyone, because the most unlikely characters may become the greatest asset to your career.

Courtesy of Culture and Manners Institute

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