Ok, I know what you’re thinking. We all hate those embarrassing times when, at the least opportune moment, we realize we are not up to full capacity.
Someone called out sick; someone is taking an unscheduled break or half the staff seems to be working like robots with little concern for the customer’s best interests. What happened?
Well, you have shrinkage.
Not shrinkage of material or even product but shrinkage of willpower and desire to improve.
The winter blues affect more than just our personal mood, it changes the mood of our entire business.
Loading docks now seem to be littered with windblown debris, you hear people coughing all the time and employees are office bound – unwilling to venture outside for lunch or fresh air. Outside sales calls taper off and with it go employee commissions.
Not the best work conditions, right?
When we’re “trapped” in the office it’s no different than kids locked in the house over a long rainy holiday weekend. They get bored and “go crazy” really quick. At work, the already poor conditions become amplified for the employees.
The office bully again rears his ugly head, the annoying boss becomes more annoying and a constant barrage of innuendo and sarcasm has replaced positive reinforcement in all but a few departments.
Your employees have lost the daily battle facing them; to be positive, productive, accountable and profitable.
They’re exasperated. They’re beat down. They’re unwilling to go the extra mile to make your customer’s experience all it can be. Is there employee engagement? HA, not for a long time…
They are just a shadow of what they once were. They have shrinkage!
But all is not lost my friend.
Even management can get shrinkage from time to time – they’re imperfect people too. The winter blahs affect them just as it affects you. That’s why your business is going through these changes now.
But spring is just around the corner and a great leader can pull the team up from the greatest depths.
A great leader:
- Is confident, not arrogant
- Believes in his/her team and knows they can do better
- Is willing to listen to the opinions of the team because he knows they’re a fountain of knowledge just waiting to be tapped
- Is passionate
- Is a role model for what needs to be done and walks-the-walk
- Takes responsibility
Have faith, the best is yet to come. Brush off the winter blues and the office failings. Toss out the negativity as you would a broken glass. Chalk-up the snide comments to a momentary brain-freeze and get ready to shine.
I have faith in your leadership and so should you – use this as an opportunity for renewal.
- Forget about what happened “yesterday” and focus on what you will do to improve starting today.
- Clear out the clutter from your desk and office area. Remember, we’re making a fresh start.
- Find an under-performing coworker and ask, “How can I help you?”
- Forget about being “good enough”. Vow to be your best and maybe even the best in your department.
- Come in a little early each day and get yourself ready for work on time – no excuses. Don’t be a clock watcher.
- Go to lunch with a different person once or twice a week. Get to know the entire team. Employees perform better when their coworkers aren’t strangers.
- Don’t worry about who gets the credit. You’re all in this together now.
- Smile more, thank more and give more to those around you. You’ll be richly rewarded in return.
…even if you have shrinkage today!