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Make Time for the Craic!

17th March 2016

St Patrick’s Day….

is upon us and tonight crowds will be out drinking their compulsory Pints of Guinness (Other alcoholic drinks are also available!), donning big hats and Leprechaun outfits to celebrate the arrival of Christianity arriving into Ireland. At least that’s what it started out as being, now it is any excuse for a piss up! But even that approach arrives from the fact that Christians were allowed on this day to drink alcohol as restrictions were lifted for the day. Hence the rise of the celebration, parades and parties all across the country to ‘down the shamrock’!

Has he lost the plot I hear you call?

How on earth is this connected to the delivering a great experience?

Well, whatever it is that you are going out and celebrating as a team, it’s part of the culture you are delivering. I was fortunate in my early career to work in some amazing businesses who used to throw a great party and get the team together at any excuse for a social. Any day with a Y in it was good enough to form an excuse to get the team together and go out and ‘bond’! But what I remember as a result of it, or should I say what little of it I remember, is that it brought the team together as a unit and we really knew each other. We became a team!

Now clearly you don’t need to deliver an alcohol infused full night bender for this to be the case. A good selection of activities to bring the team together can be created. It just needs to match the culture of your business and the people in it. So whether that is a trip to the Theatre, a day out team building making rafts OR a straight from work until 3am bender (Clearly I have no preference here) then it is an important part of the process of work hard/play hard!

We live in a world now where targets are relentless! Strategic initiatives are formed, projects delivered and transformation ongoing that we sometime forget to celebrate the little wins along the way. For most of us what we do is a journey, not a destination! So enjoying the journey is part of the experience. This is especially important when you lead people as part of your role as they are going through this change with you. Sometimes just pausing to reflect how far we have come, makes us realise just how much we have achieved. And people fail to see that when they are involved in the day to day running of the business, or in charge of deadlines and deliverables to hit.

So make time for celebrating. Make it a conscious part of your planning process. Check points in the transition that pause to celebrate and appreciate the difference that have been made. The people who have delivered, and the difference they have made. Recognise and reward this. It keeps people energised on the next part of the journey. It keeps the fire burning and it keeps your vision and goals front and centre in people’s mindset. Let alone the difference it makes to employee engagement!

Which is where ultimately this comes to its peak. Great people stay at great companies because of the way they are treated and the platforms you put them on to succeed. They buy into your purpose, your culture and your goals. But they have to feel valued and they have to feel at home. A talented set of individuals will deliver some results. However how often have you seen a motivated unit deliver results way beyond their expectation? In a competitive market great employees will be the difference between success and failure. Give great employees a platform to deliver on and they will deliver a great experience for your customers. Great experiences deliver loyalty, which delivers advocacy, which delivers sustainable growth and profit. They will even forgive you if times get a little tough and things don’t go smoothly for a while. Because you are a unit, you are a team and you are united.

Well, that’s my excuse for a piss up anyway!

Until the next time, keep loving your audiences!

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