What’s in your backpack?

By: Chad Koebcke

All summer- or maybe in the last couple of days, we’ve prepped for this week. It’s back to school week. As parents and guardians, we’ve supplied the school supplies, new clothes, and the ultimate backpack with the matching lunch box. We follow the school’s list of items and make sure our children have their pencils, red pens, notebooks, snacks, hand soap, Kleenex, etc. We make sure they have the tools to be successful this school year.

Flashback 20, 30, 40 years and remember what it felt like the morning of your first day. You put on your new clothes, eat a hearty breakfast, grab your lunch money or packed lunch, put your new backpack on, and walk out the door another year older. You’re prepared. You get to school and open your backpack to see new pencils, new notebook, and even new loose leaf paper for the trapper keeper. You’re prepared.

How do we maintain this feeling in business? How are we rebooting for each year, quarter, or month? We make sure our children are prepared for each new year, but what are we doing for our business rhythms and employees? What if we harnessed our inner child to maintain this fresh perspective throughout the year? We need to make sure our backpacks are exploding with the supplies to be successful on the job. New notebooks are to the resources we supply our team members as new pencils are to the ideas and procedures our teams enhance, develop, and implement. What do we pack in our metaphorical backpack to help ourselves and our teams stay motivated throughout the year? See our 4 tips for keeping the pulse beating strongly.

4 Tips to Reboot the Pulse

  1. Prioritize your time. Balance and prioritize your time. Put mission critical tasks at the top of your list. Delegate other tasks to specific individuals who do them well.
  2. Observe your team. Take time to observe the rhythms of your team. What’s working, what’s not. Make changes as needed. As our Culture Advisor Alison Abercrombie says, “it’s not about seeing how far people can be pushed- it’s about providing opportunity for people to push themselves.” There’s always room to improve processes.
  3. Take care of yourself. Sleep. Eat well. Move your body. Stay present. Do what you love. As a leader, if you’re not taking care of yourself, how can you take care of your team?
  4. Try something new. What is ultimately so exiting about a new school year? Is it the unknown? Is it being another year older? Is it about the new possibilities the school year will bring? The excitement comes from the clean slate the new school year brings. Everyday can be a clean slate. Don’t be afraid to try something new.