The kind of listening I am referring to, is more about a willingness to keep learning, and a rejection of an "I already know all I need to." kind of attitude. And because the two characteristics of bravery and learning can, and do, often collide, they must be bound together with a thick rope of humility.
As I have been working on Arrayed et Adorned, and perticularly Bathing Beauty Swim Wear, I have gone through a ton of growing pains. It has been a great deal of work. But not the kind of work you would have expected. Most of my work has been that of learning. Learning how to sew, learning how to write, learning how to talk, learning how to listen.
Eventually I got on to the good stuff; learning how to blog, learning how to do computers, learning how to handle myself with other companies, learning how to disagree with mean people, learning how to get a deal from a fabric source, learning how to walk away from a dishonest situation.
And here's one for you that you have to stand firm on in the world; learning how to choose what God loves, over what man loves, and be seen as an idiot for doing so. If you ever sell anything, you will be pushed to sell it for more than you should. This is a great dilemma in the sellers market today. And I have had to learn to be honest in the darkness, where no one else can see me but God.
So learning how to learn is huge in business. It is what prods us to get better and better at what we do.
To end, here are some golden nuggets to tuck into your business tool belt. Some wisdom to carry with you as you strive to be faithful to God amongst a people who could careless, and even with some people who should know better, and don't.
When it comes to running a business.-
- You can't, and I mean CANNOT waste your time being offended. There will be a great need for communications as you are working with others, and where there is communication, there is a ton of miss communication. Just be patient, kind, and careful with your words. You don't want to have to eat them later if you loose your cool. And if you do loose your cool, you better suck it up, and own it. Never shame God, just because you are working with people who don't care about Him.
- You will never know it all, so take advice humbly. Ask a lot of questions. And be careful to actually listen to the answers.
- Be gracious to those you are working with. If you know more than they do, be kindly patient with them. If you are truly wiser than they are, you should be able to bear their neediness. On the other hand, when you know less, be respectful, even when they don't deserve it.
- If someone really sucks, just stop doing business with them. Have the backbone to walk away peacefully. Because it really isn't that big of a deal usually. Even if we loose a little. And yes, even if we should have won. It is better to trust God to work out the evil. And move on.
- Above all else, please God in how you treat others. That is more important than getting what you think you deserve, what you've worked for, what you've paid for, or what you think you were promised. Cause in the end, you don't deserve it. All the fruit, you will ever work for, is simply a sweet merciful gift from your Heavenly Father. And if He withholds it, through what ever means, He has good reason. Trust Him, and you'll be fine.