In our part of the world, Melbourne, Australia, this is the time of year that the team drifts back to the office post the seasonal break and the business television changes channels to watch the Australian Open (Tennis)!
Yep, it was Cricket over the past three weeks, the Horse-racing through Spring – need I go on?
So, as a leader, there is fierce competition to keep your people tuned in, on track, focused and working! Not only is it in our blood as Australians, to follow sport, it’s cultural; it’s the push of the media and most other influences just don’t work.
My top tip to keep the work operational and if there are deadlines in place, is to work with the flow and not ‘swim against it’. Ask the team “how are we going to achieve our work over the next two weeks?” And, give thought to how you can make it a fun & rewarding time to work and be at work. Finally, buy a couple of tickets to the final days of the tennis (if still available) and use these as an award for the person who managed to achieve the MOST work completed!
Finally, not everyone is ‘into’ Tennis, so be mindful that this could drive some internal conflict in the workplace – you'll need to have some individual conversations and a team understanding if you want to gain the best outcome for all.