A sign above a shop read- “Puppies for Sale.”
Signs like these have a way of grabbing the attention of the children. A small boy, upon seeing the sign, entered into the shop asking; “How much are you selling the puppies for?”
The store owner said- “Anywhere from £300 to £500.”
The little boy removed all the money he had from his pocket-“I have £23.70,” he said. “Can I please look at them?”
The shop owner smiled and whistled. From the kennel, five cute puppies ran out. One puppy was lagging considerably behind. Pointing at the dog the little boy asked- “what is wrong with that one?”
The shopkeeper explained- “the hip socket of the puppy is missing. At least that is what the veterinarian said. It will never walk properly again.”
The little boy cheered with excitement- “That is the puppy that I want to buy.”
“You don’t have to buy that dog. You can have it for free.”
The little boy was upset. He looked up at the shop owner and said;
“I don’t want you to give him to me. That dog is of equal worth as the rest of the dogs. I’ll give you £23.70 now, and £5 a month until I have him fully paid for.”
The shopkeeper replied- “Are you sure you want this dog. It is never going to walk, run or play with you.”
The little boy lifted one side of his trousers up exposing his crippled legs supported on a big metal brace. He looked up at the shop owner and softly replied, “Well, I don’t run so well myself, and the little puppy will need someone who understands!”
Kindness is the most important value at The Marble Group.
At the last company meeting we spoke about high performance, what it takes to win, we spoke about Usain Bolt who is a champion. Has anyone ever noticed that the man is almost always smiling?
He has something called the Usain Bolt Foundation whose mission is dedicated to the legacy for happy children; to enhance the character of children through educational and cultural development, as they live their dreams. So he is not only a high performer but kind also.
Each of us has the same value here. I want you guys to remember that when you speak to anyone inside or outside the organisation you need to do so with kindness and respect.
We cannot control what other people say or do but we can choose our actions, we can decide to be kind at every interaction we have with each other, our friends, our families and customers.
Did you know that scientists have told us that it takes 41 muscles to frown and only 17 muscles to smile. It means you have to actively try and be miserable!
We will go so much further as a company if we are kind and positive to each other. Being kind takes down barriers, it allows for open communication where people are able to voice how they feel and potential improvements for the business.
One more thing, kindness is not a grand gesture, it doesn’t have to be setting up a foundation or building a school. Kindness is details. It means the small things people do for each other. It’s giving up your seat on the tube for the pregnant lady or helping a blind man cross the road.
Or to bring it home to The Marble Group, it’s about sharing your lunch when someone forgot theirs, it’s about making someone a tea or a coffee or doing things as simple as saying good morning, please and thank you. Even taking the bin out is an act of kindness to the rest of the company.
Many of you do this every day, when the fitters help each other in with big islands, I love the camaraderie between you guys. When the office staff help each other complete tasks and cover each other’s work when people are overwhelmed it’s great. And in the factory, helping each other learn different aspects of the job is great.
Everything we do is with positivity and kindness. Smile, it’s free.