It’s the final day of school holidays! “Yippee” I hear some of you whisper and yell!

I really enjoy not having crazy mornings and afternoons in my role of parent chef chauffeur. Conversely, I’m secretly rejoicing the fact that my routine is being reinstated in a couple of days!

Routine, rituals and structure keep the wheels churning in our home and my office. From birth, the kids fitted into the routine and to this day they know that 7pm is wind down time and into the bedroom! Whereas, school holidays all the routine & structures collapse!

In the office (and home), structure builds the fulfilment of expectations, routine creates the climate – the way people feel and rituals embed the culture. It’s a great equation and it’s all too evident when one or more parts are missing.

During a recent leadership workshop, I asked the group “what happens on a Friday?” What are the rituals? Everyone’s face changed shape! There was a buzz; talk of Quiz sessions, YouTube sharing, community lunches and a list of fun activities which brought their teams together, deleted the hierarchy and created harmony in the office.

There is a definite need to regularly ‘stir and shake’ the routine of the workspace however leaders must be mindful  - aware of peoples’ reactions – so do what you need to do to prepare the team. If it’s a structure shift then this is more dynamic.

A team activity is advantageous to identify these three equation components: routine, ritual & structure. Being aware by observing others is vital for a leader to gain an understanding of how people behave in our times of constant change. 

Lou's Leadership Views: Help Others Reduce Their Stress

For some, this is a stressful time of year.  In our part of the world, it’s the end of the financial year.

Those who have a concern for the assurance that things have been properly thought out and in meaningful order are in demand, possibly demanding of us and appearing unbending, rigid and nit picking to others.

We only have a few more days of these behaviours and next week there will be a sigh of relief!

However, let’s be mindful of the welfare of those around us: in our team, friends and family who might be suffering. It’s time to ask questions to understand how you can help them or just perform an act of kindness: deliver them their favourite takeaway coffee, complete their tedious activities, arrange to collect their kids – you'll know what concerns them.

 Then there are those who are motivated by the urgency and desire to achieve the appearance of what is unachievable. If you are in this category, take time out to think of your team-mates and how you may be ‘adding fuel to the fire’! Draw on the strengths of being helpful, caring and supportive opposed to being ambitious, persuasive and forceful.

The truth about our behaviour often hurts – we don't receive feedback often enough, which means self-reflection/awareness is necessary to survive our poor performance in our communications and relationship management.

Off you go, help someone minimise their stress and practise some unfamiliar behaviours!