are you making progress through the busyness

Are you progressing through all the busyness?

As we continue to adjust to working in the era of social distancing, many people have shared they are busy. Even more busy than before their community went into lockdown. Sometimes it is due to more outreach with remote teams. And other times it is to learn more. And of course there is juggling a family at home.

With all the busyness, are you making progress? When we get to the other side, will you look back and be happy with how you spent your time? It’s not too late to make adjustments if they are needed!

how well are you plugged in?

How are you plugged in?

The way information flows is always interesting. Word of mouth is always the most powerful. And that is certainly true now.

In speaking with a number of business owners and leaders over the last few weeks, the gap in awareness of programs available to help business through these times was significant. Some people heard about the programs from many sources, including people in their neighborhood. And others were completely unaware, even though they banked with banks that were lenders in the programs.

How are you plugged in? Are you getting the information and support you need to be successful right now?

what project can you do now?

What projects can you do that you have been putting off?

We all have a list of things that need to get done. And it is easy to put them off. This weekend, I knocked two off my list: power washing my driveway and cleaning my carpet. While doing the work isn’t fun, the result is fantastic!

Many businesses now have the time to complete all those projects that will make the business run better and more efficiently, but haven’t had time to focus on them. There are many programs right now aimed at keeping people employed. Why not take the time to complete those projects that will position you to take off once things get back to normal!

how are you getting perspective?

How are you getting a clear perspective?

It was a foggy morning. One that you could hardly see through when you were in the middle of it. But as I got to the top of the hill, the fog parted to reveal a beautiful, clear day.

That’s the thing about perspective. Sometimes you need to raise up a bit to get out of the fog and get a clear perspective.

what are you doing to keep a smile on your face?

How are surrounding yourself with things that bring a smile to your face?

I love flowers. They are happy, especially in spring. So during my trip to Trader Joe’s to pick up groceries, I picked up flowers too. Apparently I wasn’t the only one. The woman checking me out shared that flowers sales were up dramatically.

Turn on the news or social media and you’ll find largely negative stories. And there is no end in sight to the pandemic. In the era or social distancing, it is important to have something that lifts your spirits and brings a smile to your face. How are you keeping a smile on your face?

Are you inspired or intimidated?

Are you inspired?

Over the last week the reaction to the coronavirus has been truly inspiring. People have come together to help neighbors and communities. Businesses that make alcohol have started producing and donating hand sanitizer. Small businesses have started curbside pickup or home delivery. Creativity and innovation are everywhere. Are you inspired yet?

are you taking a moment to observe the beauty?

Amidst the panic and chaos, there are things of beauty

Things are changing quickly. Businesses and public institutions are shutting down quickly. People are working from home and scrambling to adjust daily life. For many it is stressful and scary. And the news seems like it is non-stop and bad. And that is why taking a moment to step outside, take a walk and observe the beauty of nature is so important right now. When was the last time you took a moment to stop and observe it?

stop fighting nature

Stop fighting it and learn to work with it

The weather changed just a tad and the humidity level notched up just a lot. It was just enough to cause a number of women at the gym trying to fix their hair trouble. They were working against what their hair wanted to do and the hair was winning. They were fighting against nature.

The same thing happens in business. Industry conditions, the economy, the nature of products, etc. all have a natural flow. Companies that learn how to leverage that flow have the greatest success. Meanwhile, competitors that fight things and constantly struggle lose ground. How are you leveraging that natural flow to outperform your competitors?

The little things matter

It’s the little things that matter

A friend was telling me about tuna he buys. He loves it. So, I did what many do when something is highly recommended. I went to Amazon and bought one to try. The package arrived a couple days later. And when I opened it, I was delighted. Attached to the tuna was a hand written note, addressed to me, that said they hope I enjoy my tuna. That little touch brought a smile to my face.

How often are you adding a little touch that delights the people around you?

how are you mentoring your people

How are you mentoring your people?

Every year, the American City Business Journals hosts Mentoring Monday. I was pleased to participate today as a mentor in Portland. The Portland Business Journal brought together 50 mentors and more than 200 mentees from across the region. The bell rang and the conversations started. Each 7 minutes, mentees rotated to ask questions and get exposure to many different perspectives. It was a fantastic way to start the day.

As I reflected on the conversations and the format, I was impressed. It was a great way for ideas to be shared quickly in a relevant way. And a great format for companies to adopt too. Why not have a morning where people in the company can sign up to talk to leaders about the business, career paths, ideas, etc. one on one.

Kudos to PBJ for putting together a great event and giving a format for a great way to start mentoring conversations!