Shaking it off

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Did you have a bad weekend? Do you feel bluesy?

People who know me know that I’m an aware optimist. What does that mean? Well, I know the world sometimes really s**ks. Bad things happen to good people – a lot! There are times I get bluesy, but even then I try my best to turn it around. That’s why I totally love this video “You Had a Bad Day” by Daniel Powter. I can’t play it enough.

Monday morning doesn’t have to be just another downer. I love Monday morning. You might say, “Well, of course you like it, your the boss!” Well, being the boss is really hard, really stressful. It’s not about making money, because sometimes the money just isn’t there. I love Monday morning because I get to share, contribute, be a part of something that we create together. It’s a feeling I had long before I was “the boss.” Monday morning is one of the times that I give back. I can donate time and money. Those are good things to do. But when it comes to work, I can give of myself in ways that are measured by the satisfaction I have together with my teammates.

I didn’t always have this feeling. Loving work did not come naturally to me. Looking back, I worked pretty darn hard as a kid. I worked a lot of jobs. One of the crazy ones I tell my kids about was working for a catering hall. It wasn’t the job that was crazy, it was the transportation. The catering hall was 2 miles away and the hours were from 6 PM to 1 AM. Getting there meant bicycling in the snow there and back. I must have been insane.

Still, in the neighborhood I grew up in, most of the kids worked very hard and many gave money to their parents. Some of my friends got a good idea early on about what service work meant, pulling two paper routes, day in and day out, for much of high school. I didn’t put myself in their class. I had a lazy streak and I didn’t think I could ever match the type of commitment these kid showed.

There were moments, like ones I had in Israel, jumping on a truckload of cotton during the harvest to pack it down, that I felt, “Wow, this is fun!” but it was much later, working at ADP and Ernst and Young (two great employee-centric companies), that I really learned that being part of a work team could be a passion that could carry you through all the days of the week. We fed on each others’ enthusiasm, having fun in the pursuit of our common goals, respecting and caring for each other in ways that went far beyond the immediate task.

Sometimes my workers come in after a bad weekend. I know or can imagine that it’s been really bad. I appreciate it when they can push it aside, shake it off and get on with the day. But its’ more than just getting on with the day. They come in, knowing that things will be right at work. Ok, maybe it won’t be perfect. They might have a “bad customer.” They might slip up on a service call. Yet, they know that the relationship is fundamentally a good one, a healthy one, even a fun one. So they had a bad weekend, but now it’s Monday morning and Monday means a fresh start and a new week. It’s a chance to make a good impression, to receive a thank you, to laugh and build together.

If you’ve had a bad day, enjoy a song, shake it off and hopefully have a rainbow of a day.

The sun is up, the coffee is brewing and the birds are chirping. The blog entry is done, so I’m ready to go!

P.S. Please don’t be bashful. Share your joys or sorrows, your motivational messages. Use those social media buttons. Connect!

2 Responses to Shaking it off

  1. R says:

    Each time I roll out in the morning, even on the not nearly perfect mood or day, somewhere in that day or week I’m going to meet someone who I’ve never met before, who really needs my help with a significant problem, and if all goes well they will have put enought trust into me to help them. A nice French, Italian, or Kona roast for the drive and that would be just fine for me!

  2. Gerry says:

    Keeping it positive and helpful is what it is all about. You need to be able to enjoy other people. That’s where the real pleasure of most work comes from. Rarely do we operate in a vacuum. Of course when you are alone, it is wonderful to break out that coffee mup for an energizer. As you know, I love my Starbucks coffee. Every day I go there I think about how nice the folks are behind the counter, how professional they are and how close Hearts Pest Management is to my goal of creating a team of pest control workers dedicated to excellence in their profession and raising the bar for others in the future.

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