Of Auto Drivers, Stephen Covey and Win-Win

Abhishek Paul
1 min readMar 8, 2019

I don’t particularly look forward to my morning auto rides via Ola / Uber. There’s many a slip between the booking and the drop (to put it mildly). So this morning while my expectations weren’t much different, I had just read Stephen Covey’s idea of seeking a win-win and was wondering how it would apply in a seemingly no-win scenario like this. I thought the only option would be for me to bite my tongue and compromise more (be the bigger man).

So this morning Senthil comes to pick me up in his auto. He arrives on time and willingly waits for me to finish my cup of tea. So far so good. As we near my destination, we realize neither of us have change to pay for the trip. I could sense my jaw clenching, I was getting ready for some complaining (at a minimum) and a heated argument and delays (at worst). But Senthil was more chilled out than me. When he realized I was 5 rupees short, he was perfectly fine to accept what I had without a hint of annoyance. I had to ask him again to make sure I didn’t misunderstand.

He proved that one didn’t have to read Stephen Covey to transform the interaction into a win-win or be the bigger man. Maybe it’s something more natural?