As a kid, back to school meant a new beginning. It was a chance to get a fresh start and improve on whatever I may have failed at the year before. And let’s be honest – it meant cool new back to school gadgets. As an adult I don’t have the luxury of a fresh start. By August, we are well into the third quarter and pushing to hit our quarterly goals. What if we gave ourselves the chance to ‘recharge’ mid-quarter? Do you think it would help productivity?
If so, here are a few ways to get back on track after summer vacation and close out Q3 with a bang.
1. Get rid of old processes
When you have a document to share with your entire team, don’t type up an email with a list of recipients who may never actually read your email. Instead, find a collaboration tool you can use within your team so you can seamlessly upload the document for everyone to access. There will be no more excuses of “lost emails” or “I didn’t receive that email”. There will be a centralized place for everyone to grab the information they need, when they need it. “Reply-all” emails will be a thing of the past.
2. Collaborate with your team members
Once summer comes to an end, you start to see your team members’ faces more often. Mostly everyone is back from summer vacation feeling a bit rejuvenated. Take advantage of that feeling – it might not last long. Get your team together. Get them to collaborate on a project that might otherwise be a solo project. Take their ideas seriously and incorporate them into the project. You can even find a tool that makes collaborating easy to do in real time.
3. Try out new roles and activities
There are a ton of activities that school children can try. Art, sports, drama club, etc. There is rarely a time when they can’t try out for whatever their heart desires. However, there comes a point in your career that you may think you couldn’t possibly give something else a try. Let’s say you’re the VP of Engineering but find the sales side of the business fascinating. Shadow the sales team for a few hours each day. Not only will you become acquainted with a department you may rarely connect with, you will gain an insight into another area of the business. Who knows, if you are good enough they may even let you talk to an opp. You won’t know until you try. You can participate in the fun Friday activities, go to the work happy hours, and spend a little more time engaging socially with your colleagues.
4. Share your knowledge (In school they call it cheating)
In school, it’s considered cheating if you look off of your neighbor’s paper for an answer to a question you may be struggling with. In the workplace, it’s considered knowledge sharing. I can think of many times when I have ‘looked off a colleagues paper’ to help me find answers to my questions. My problem was solved and no one was angry. They were even flattered that I wanted to use their messaging. I think we actually used the terminology “re-purposing content.” What was once considered cheating in school is now looked at as sharing your knowledge in the workplace. Share away my friends!
Whether you are starting back to school, coming back from summer vacation, or even starting a new job, this is your chance to start over on a positive note. You can get rid of old processes (email) and really start to leverage your teammates’ knowledge. Goodbye summer, hello new beginnings!
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