Don’t you love it when things just…work out? One of my team’s favorite, still talked about ‘team building activities’ came to fruition nearly by accident and mostly out of necessity. Let me explain.
Once or twice a year I invite my leadership team to my home for a day of planning, sharing ideas, and well – hanging out. On this one such occasion, I was putting the finishing touches on our agenda early in the morning, and realized that I was going to be on point for school pick up at 2:45 that afternoon – as my husband was out of town. *&%! I was going to need to excuse myself from being hostess and come back with a kid in tow…how was that going to work. Following our planned agenda, I had intended for a casual happy hour to round out our day. And to top it all off, I hadn’t picked up any happy hour goodies yet. (See aforementioned husband out of town, single Mom survival mode was in play.)
Light bulb! Working some “team building” into the agenda.
I grabbed my wallet and took out all of the cash that I had – something like $16.67. Okay, that’ll work. Next I shoved that in an envelope and found myself a sticky note – love those things. I wrote the following on said sticky note, and shoved it inside with the cash.
- Something to drink.
- Something on sale.
- Something to eat.
- Something gluten free.
- One selfie.
- 30 minutes to deliver the goods, using as close to the amount given, without going over. Go!!
Around 2:30 in the afternoon, when “team building” came due on the agenda I let my crew know that I needed to go pick up Jordan from school, and they were on their own for the next activity. I handed them the envelope, told them they were in charge of rustling up our happy hour grub and watched as they huddled around the instructions and then realized the task in front of them.
In no time, a driver was identified and they were racing for the door. What happened next, I’ll never know for certain. I’ve heard that there was a show down at the local Ace Hardware because they apparently didn’t have ANYTHING on sale. Grocery Outlet was the perfect destination for a cheap bottle of wine and gluten free snacks. There may or may not have been an inappropriate U-turn taken to Safeway to find a clearance item bar of chocolate.
What I do know, is that when they returned back to the house they were laughing, there was swearing, and they were SO proud of their happy hour finds for $16 and some odd change. It was certainly NOT the best glass of wine, but we shared it with smiles. That chocolate was near the end of its shelf life, quite literally – but delicious nonetheless because of how carefully and quickly it was procured.
They led, they followed, they conquered and they had a blast. I highly recommend sending your team out for happy hour goods on a budget sometime soon.
1. Find some cash, not too much – not too little.
2. Make a short list; food, drink, and a twist.
3. Set a time limit.
4. Always ask for a selfie. ?
5. Let them go alone so that you don’t witness any illegal activity. ?
Thank you for joining me on my journey to influence.