Inspiration from the Carpenter – Control Your Reactions


How do you react when you get bad feedback or told that you’re wrong? A week ago, our company had a situation where we were accused of installing a Zip Hydrotap incorrectly in a tenancy on the Gold Coast 2 years ago.


The reason the job had prompted the builder to call us, was because the Zip unit needed to have it’s filters changed and get a service. The Zip unit was installed with the front facing sideways and when the Zip Technician called out to fix it, he supposedly told the tenant that the plumber had installed the Zip unit incorrectly and he could not change the filters or fix the unit due to incorrect installation.


So the builder that we originally did the job for rang my dad and told him that we had to go down and install the Zip unit correctly as it wasn’t installed to the Zip Code of Installation. The builder also sent pictures of the Zip unit installation.


When I looked at the pictures, I couldn’t see any issue with the way it had been installed and from previous experience, knew that the possible reason the Zip was installed sideways was because

a)      The cabinet space was too small for the Zip Unit to face front on and or

b)      The hoses connecting from the Zip Unit to the taps couldn’t be connected due to the sink being installed too far away which would have resulted in a variation in price for hose extensions and labour.

Either way, I forwarded the photos to the Zip QLD State Manager who promptly advised that the installation was fine and went further to investigate why the Zip unit couldn’t be fixed.


I forwarded the response from Zip back to the builder. After much to and throwing about why the Zip couldn’t be fixed, the issue was because the Zip Technician wasn’t a licensed plumber and couldn’t disconnect the Zip to service it (due to recent plumbing law changes) and then I was told that the Zip unit couldn’t even come out of the cabinet for servicing because of a joint in the cabinetry. I relayed this information back to the builder, who then accused us of not installing the Zip in the right hand side of the cupboard as per the plan where there was plenty of room to install. When the builder said this, I was exasperated and knew that this was a battle I wasn’t going to win.


I wiped my hands of the issue because my main concern was refuting the accusation from the builder that the Zip Unit had been installed incorrectly. And I had proved that it was installed correctly despite facing sideways.


Initially I was angry at the builder because he should have followed through with Zip, not me, and then I worried about how the Zip unit could be taken out. I couldn’t understand how the Zip Unit could be put in the cupboard space, yet not be able to come out??


I mulled over the issue in my mind and that night, my newborn daughter Magdalene slept through most of the night unlike other nights and it should have been the perfect night for me to get a good nights sleep. But I couldn’t sleep because I kept going over the issue in my head.


A couple of days later, I got a call from Zip advising that the Technician went out again to try and get the Zip unit out to service it and he unhinged the cabinet door and was able to get the Zip unit out. The Manager apologized for not rectifying the issue sooner and couldn’t give me a reason why the Technician didn’t think of taking off the door in the first place. For me, I was relieved that the Zip could be fixed and sent an email to the builder advising the update. The response back was ‘Thank you for following this through’. No apology for accusing us of installing the Zip unit incorrectly. I wish I hadn’t lost sleep over something so trivial.


But this situation reminded me of how to react when accused of something that is incorrect or even correct. Rather than react angrily, I calmly made the necessary phone calls to get to the bottom of the issue. I know many tradespeople would tell the builder to get stuffed. I’m not saying I was perfect in reacting the way I did, because towards the end I did send a heated email to the builder advising him that he wasn’t a plumber and a few other things.


Interestingly, I had the tenant ring me in relation to the issue and she advised that she could never reach the builder at 11 o’clock in the morning and he would never return her calls. I explained the situation to her, and she was grateful to know what was going on.


Reacting negatively to bad feedback or an inaccurate accusation is only human. But reacting calmly and positively (even though your head and heart are screaming otherwise) shows inner strength and is a quality that God wants to instill in all of us because it promotes peace. Maybe we would have less broken families and wars if we controlled the way we reacted to situations. It is the harder road to follow, but the one that will promote peace. It will also help us sleep at night too.


Proverbs 14:30 A heart at peace gives life to the body.