The windows in my apartment were replaced recently. This is a huge project in my community as the contractor is replacing windows in some 550 apartments.
I had some prep to do leading up to “the big day”, which included emptying and packing up two bookcases and a china cabinet to allow smoother access to certain windows. Additionally, I was responsible for a neighbor’s apartment, which was done on the same day.
Let’s just say that doing this during typical August weather in New York had a level of stress attached to it….
I was completely surprised by what actually occurred, that is, it was an amazingly positive experience.
The crew of some 12-13 men was awesome. It operated like an orchestra. Each knew his specific tasks as well as those of his co-workers. I was fascinated not just by what they were doing, but the flow of how they worked was impressive.
Unfortunately, I was “kicked out” when they went into high gear because it was dangerous for a resident to be present in the midst of the actual work. I wanted to observe more closely because their rhythm and work ethic was intriguing. I wanted to know why.
The process was well supervised. Spiro, the superintendent, and Alberto, the foreman, didn’t miss a beat. In addition, the architect was available in case any unforeseen issues arose.
The men were respected and treated well. I didn’t see the tension or conflict that might occur while doing such high stress work. Civility trumped strife.
The workers have pride in their craft. It was important that they do a good job not just for their bosses, but for themselves. I’m interested in how they hire because clearly, the workers are a cut above.
The bottom line? Strong leadership, strong employees, strong work ethic.
So the inevitable question arises….how are these elements showing up in your workplace? As the leader, you set the tone and influence the outcome. These principles are universal and I hope this anecdote will inspire you as the experience impressed me.
Think about how you can apply these concepts in your company. One small tweak may yield a vastly different outcome. What do you have to lose?
Have a great week!