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2012 – It Was the Best of Times…

....it was the worst of times.  As I write this, the election is about to take place.  According to the polls, it’s very close.  So regardless of the outcome, a lot of us are going to be unhappy.  It’s been a tough year for many, marked more by stress and worry than peace and joy.

     Leaders, your time is now! Ponder these:

     What are you going to do to end this year/start off next year on a new, positive, exciting note?  I’ve had several organizations call me about doing year end employee appreciation events and New Year kick-offs.  We are going to hit the reset button!

     What is your exciting vision for your team for 2013?  (Yes, I said exciting.)

     Have you come up with some new and creative (I didn’t say expensive) ways to reward and recognize your people for all they’ve done?  Retention is a big concern as the economy improves.  Your best and brightest might be ready to leave you.  And they won’t tell you first.  Better act now to retain them.

     Remember stress outside of work impacts morale at work.  Workers are concerned about their country, about their health, about their families, about their retirement.  Many feel they are being asked to do more and more with no increase in pay or benefits (and maybe even with a reduction!).  At the very least, many are confused by changes in insurance.  At the same time, leaders are struggling with their own concerns and are trying to keep their organizations afloat!  And both groups seem frustrated with the other.  No one thinks, “Hey, we are all in this together!” or “If I think things are bad now, what if my company closes?  I should do everything I can to support my boss/team.”   I think after the election will be a great time to present a compelling vision for your people, a rallying cry to take you into next year and beyond.  Doing nothing will waste a great opportunity.

     Remind them how important their work is.  I have yet to meet someone who didn’t do important work.  From garbage men to school secretaries to CPAs, everyone does work that has huge ramifications for others.  But they forget, they think their job doesn’t matter.  It’s time to remind them. 

     I do want to take a moment and express my admiration for everyone who is a leader.  It’s hard to be the one who’s responsible for the results, who has to deal with everyone else’s drama, who has to make the hard calls.  And we need you more than ever.  We need your strength, your inspiration, your wisdom, and your belief – in our country, our organizations, and most importantly, in us.


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