The Law of the Garbage Truck: – By David J. Pollay

law of the garbage truck

I got familiar with the Garbage Truck Concept since few years ago through an email sent to me by a friend (I even posted the email in my journal http://miss-pia.livejournal.com/36481.html) . The Taxi driver story went viral and I immediately liked it. I was moved and from then on, I started labelling some of my feelings/reactions “garbage truck-like” and  of course,  other people who exhibit reactions as such. I didn’t know that there’s a book or website about it. I didn’t do any researches about it. I only know the concept, up until I borrowed some books from Phil and he has the book. As soon as I saw it, I just knew, sooner or later I will have to read it.

As soon as I finished the book I was reading at that moment, I started with the “The Law of the Garbage Truck” . I think it’s a book that every company should start giving away to employees, or a country should start giving away to its citizens or be a part of the curriculum in school.

If a person is open–minded, it’s impact could be great. It will facilitate introspection and awareness that our actions can greatly affect other people both in the good and bad ways; hence, we will be more heedful and tactful about how we act, react and speak.

I loved the book and I think everyone in our department should read it!

Here are my favourite excerpts from the book (my thoughts are in bold):

“You don’t have to defend yourself every time one of your imperfections is pointed out. At the same time there is no need to judge others for their imperfections. Focus on what’s good and important in your own relationships and let the Garbage Trucks- including those of your own creation – pass you by.” Pg 17
                                  –  GUILTY!

“You gain nothing by continually replaying your worst visions of how people might be unkind, unhelpful, and unfriendly to you; this only creates Garbage Trucks where they don’t exist. By smiling, waving, wishing them well, and moving on, you are free to focus on what really matters.” Pg 43

“In his book Spiritual Evolution, Harvard psychologist George Vaillant concludes, ‘The experience of forgiveness when it occurs is not just the notion of being relieved of a burden, but also a joyful eureka sense of having solved a problem. Suddenly, the fight-or-flight response of vengeance is replaced by calming vision of green pastures and still waters of peace. “ pg 60

“Our Five Fs message was always the same: (1) We are Friendly to our customers, to each other, and to everyone else at Yahoo!. People wanted to work with us; (2) We were Fast at resolving customer problems and internal issues. Our team was quick and responsive; (3) We were Focused  on our priorities and committed to resolving Yahoo! Customer issues. (4)We are Fired-up  and had plenty of energy to give the best everyday. We’d work all night if we needed to meet a challenge; (5) We were Fun! People liked working with us because we made the work environment enjoyable. Pg 66

                                –  Hope we can have 5fs too! Maybe things will be a lot better in the office!

“You can make the same choice everyday not to engage in unproductive, negative conversations just because someone starts one. You can gracefully redirect the conversation to something more meaningful. In other words, you don’t have to be a Garbage Truck to get along.” – pg 75

–          Trying to master this art!

“All beauty is loved by those who are able to perceive beauty for the perception of beauty is a delight in itself. – Abu Hamid al-Ghazali “ pg 80

“I don’t like that man. I must get to know him better.- Abraham Lincoln “ pg 83

–          As of the moment, I am following.. I don’t like that man, I’ll stay away from him. I think I better change it and I actually tried the exercise of getting to know 2 people that time I read this chapter. It felt great after.

“I followed the Garbage Truck Communication Rule. I told him what I appreciated about him and that I was committed to working with him. He could see that I was sincere and that my intentions were good.” Pg 85

–          Should practice on this too.

“It is no use walking anywhere to preach unless our walking is our preaching – St. Francis of Assisi”- pg 136

–          Must tell someone I know. ­;b

“ ..there are eight steps you must follow in order to make sure your team members are honouring their No Garbage Trucks Commitments. The first six steps should always be followed. Pursue the last two only if needed.

1.       1. Set expectations and make sure they are clear to everyone.

2.       2 . Ask each team member if the expectations are understood if there’s any confusion, discuss them further.

3.       3. Keep your own behaviour consistent with the expectaions.

4.       4. Recognize and celebrate behaviour consistent with the expectations.

5.       5. Give honest and direct feedback when the expectations are not met.

6.       6. Provide development – coaching and training – if the member of your team is struggling to meet the expectations.

7.      7.  Re-assign team members to positions that allow them meet the expectations.

8.       8. Allow employees to resign, or dismiss them, if they cannot meet the expectations.” – pg184

–          Our department should practice this!

“This is not to say that successful teams in the study avoided confrontation and debate, rather they focused more on the ‘inquiry’ (trying to understand each other’s ideas and positions) than on ‘advocacy’ (trying to convince everyone that they were right). The successful work teams were also likely to show ‘support, encouragement, or appreciation’ of their team members, rather than ‘disapproval, sarcasm, or cynicism.’” Pg  188

–          And this..

“Be discouraged from venal sins and small transgression, such as  cheating, lying, gossiping, spreading rumors, laughing at racist or sexist jokes, teasing, and bullying. They can become stepping stones to more serious falls from grace. They serve as mini-facilitators for thinking and acting destructively against your fellow creatures. – Philip Zimbardo” –pg 198

–          And this… too much bullying, back-stabbing and rumours will not help!

“Man’s goodness is a flame that can be hidden but never extinguished.” – 199

–          Humans are naturally good, and that I completely believe! =)

About Miss_Pia

Neurotic Health-care Professional who enjoys sleeping, running, reading, introspecting, pole art and exploring new things and sometimes, places!
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