Our Seventh Day of Christmas suggestion is an easy and fun one. Too often, in the end of the year rush, we miss one of the most powerful opportunities to get the most energy, confidence and motivation from the things you did all year and let them fuel you into hitting the ground running in 2010. Trust us, give it 30 minutes and a cup of Joe and see what happens.
1. Pick a day – don’t schedule it or plan it, just pick an afternoon when the majority of your team is in the office and call an impromptu “Coffee Clutch”. (For those of you who don’t know what a Coffee Clutch is, it’s that impromptu gathering that occurs as people drink their coffee and linger for some social interaction and chit chat.) Now, ordinarily impromptu “meetings” and Coffee Clutches aren’t something we would necessarily recommend. However, use this natural tendency for socialization and a 3pm caffeine jolt to your advantage.
2. Call the team together. Grab some cookies, doughnuts, chocolates – something to snack on – and if you are lucky to have a Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts within a block from you (like most of America) splurge on a latte for everyone. If not, have a fresh pot of coffee made. Now here is the trick – take control! Don’t let it become a 45 minute ordering process. Be a drill sergeant, get the order, send someone to pick up the order and tell everyone to be in your office in 10 minutes – no excuses!
3. When your team assembles, relax, enjoy your coffee and have each person share two things.
First, have each person share what they are excited about doing for the Holiday. This is a great opportunity to relate to each other and begin to build trust and team relationships by sharing what’s important to each other.
Second, have each person share what they are excited about professionally for 2010. What new skill are they learning, project are they tackling, etc. This allows your team to begin to respect each other professionally as they share what they want to accomplish in 2010 and step away from the long to-do list for a moment. The funny thing about sharing is once you say it, it starts to happen.
This seems simple and unnecessary, but it’s SO, SO powerful. All teams will face tough times, problems and disappointments. It’s your respect for each other and relationship with the team, as a whole, that will make people stick it out and see things through. This simple gathering can begin to build that team respect and team loyalty. Loyalty and commitment to the team, as a whole, is very different and much more powerful than loyalty and friendship between individual team members.
“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” – African proverb
To your team’s continued success,
Molly and Laney