What to learn from a pressure cooker?


After a quick catch up, Prakash, a senior leader said, “Today I want to talk about a critical issue. A client sent an escalation email about an issue that happened last week. It is bothering me a lot.”

What is bothering you about it?“, I asked.

He said, “I hate these escalation emails where they copy my seniors too. I start feeling that I have failed and worry about the impact.

He suddenly paused and excused himself for a minute. When he returned to the video call, I asked him, “What happened?

He said, “I am working from home and cooking on the side. The pressure cooker whistled twice, so I needed to turn the gas off. That’s why I had to step away, sorry.

No worries. What may happen if the pressure cooker does not whistle?” I asked.

Oh, it will build the steam pressure and the cooker may burst after some time.” He replied.

The pressure cooker whistle and the client escalation, do you see something common here?” I asked.

He took a long pause and went into a reflection mode.

Then he smiled and said, “Ah, I see that client escalation is like the pressure cooker whistle. It alerts us so that we can act before things go out of control. Damn, I made the whole thing about myself!

We both had smiles on our faces.

#coaching #careercoaching #leadershipcoaching

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