Recently, I ran into a seriously difficult problem with a trusted vendor. Friends told me to walk away–find someone new. But because this is a trusted vendor, and I’ve worked with this company for years, I want to have a conversation and find out what happened, as well as what will happen to prevent this thing in the future.

The point of my telling this story is that I’m sure there are lots of people who wouldn’t bother. Walking away would certainly be the path of least resistance, right? But it got me thinking about this topic, for all of us.

Even if you’ve been wronged by someone (a client, a vendor, another VA), consider whether blowing him or her off is your best option. Sure, you’re angry. But if you blow the other off, you get nothing. If you meet the other half-way, the possibilities are endless, and it’s absolutely true that if you can work through whatever happened, your relationship will be much stronger on the back end for having gone through it.

Give the Benefit of the Doubt to Honor Your Relationships

It’s true that sometimes the option to walk away is the best one. But I’d suggest that you only use it when you’ve taken the relational approach, and have given the other several opportunities to make things right for you.

No one is perfect, and everyone has a story to tell. It’s easy to remember that when we’ve made errors, yes? I’d like to suggest we all remember it more frequently when others err. People (and companies are made up of people!) who generally treat you well always deserve the benefit of the doubt.

Having high standards doesn’t mean being lacking in compassion, or being super rigid. It means knowing what you want, and working toward getting it. Doing that when things are good within relationships is a pretty noble thing. Doing that when things go badly within relationships is, I think, a much higher calling and one all of us might well aspire to.