So, Filly runs about like a chicken with her head cut off as the co-chair of the grad student union here: Running the conference is one thing...then there's facilitating grad student meetings about changes to policy and teaching, working with the Dean, the Chair, and the Graduate Program Director about funding, language classes and health insurance...the there's the wooing of prospective students...It's a lotta stuff, and me and my fellow co-chair feel the pressure. But when he started barking abrupt orders at me, I could either swallow it, or, ask kindly to be communicated with differently. I wasn't sure what was the most "professional" conduct...I choose the latter, and look what a lovely response I got!
Thanks for your note. And I apologize for my abrasiveness. I am struggling with some personal frustrations and have been unkind and impatient with you. I apologize for that. You're doing a fine job, I appreciate your work, and I certainly want this to be a collaborative process.
And then another,
Also, I'm sorry for taking this conference so seriously. I will work on being more light-hearted and to make this a more enjoyable experience.
What a nice productive moment, and what a mature partner to work with!