Stop, breathe and think – this is a lesson I learned from an episode of Blue’s Clues. You remember Steve, his dog Blue and that handy-dandy notebook. It may be a show created for preschoolers, but it reminds us that the fundamentals of good decisions don’t change.
In this particular episode, Blue is frustrated and learns that a well-timed pause can lead to a better response and ultimately better outcomes. For a company it is also valuable to “stop, breathe and think.” Regrouping is paramount to any process, so let’s explore how it can empower your business.
To stop literally means to put normal work aside.
As a company body, to breathe means to invest in the company and its people.
To think brings us ideas, correction and a better path of action, but getting the clarity to find better action requires all three steps.
Searching for Clues
So how does this look in practice? Every year before fourth quarter, Alteris Group takes a moment to put work aside in order to get together as a company. As Alteris Group has expanded into Canada and is growing in people and as a business, we made it a point to stop, breathe and think together. Our Canadian office crossed the border to join in on an adventurous endeavor – an office scavenger hunt – so that our people can get to know one another and celebrate the launch of a new product.
Why would we stop to breathe and think in this way? It …
1. Builds trust, teamwork and results.
Russel Honore, a retired Lieutenant General, said "[T]eamwork builds trust and trust builds speed."
Several team members had never met in person, but during the event we quickly learned each other’s strengths and personalities. Participating in a scavenger hunt allowed us to not only build relationships with our teammates, but also the company and other coworkers. We worked faster by delegating and depending on one another.
In order to have a healthy business, you must have relationships built on trust. Trust makes teamwork possible, and that equals results.
2. Demonstrates our values.
Talking about values is important, but displaying them is even more important. At Alteris Group, we want to put people first, clients and employees alike. Pausing to regroup as a company to have a friendly competition helps us build relationships and is good for our people. Being willing to pour time and resources back into your own people shows you value them.
3. Unifies us.
In this scavenger hunt we all were striving for a common goal; thus, together, we had to put on our thinking caps and running shoes – literally. We had to share ideas and work together. Then we got to sit and break bread together – feasting on some killer pizza.
Team-building exercises, regular company meetings and team lunches are great ways to exercise this practice. For the empowerment of your business, consider these wise words that even a preschooler can appreciate – “Stop, breathe and think.”
Thank you to the Team-Building Committee that made this happen, and the app Scavify.