“When in doubt, go back to the basics.” In my experience, it’s never a bad idea and, typically, returning to the basics helps give you a much needed fresh perspective. This mentality works wonders in the business world. A lot of people get wrapped up in details and are convinced that it is necessary to develop complex and complicated solutions to each of their business problems. I couldn’t disagree more. In my experience, I have found that there is often strength in simplicity. To me, everything I really need to know about working in business has roots in my kindergarten classroom.
This should be a no brainer, but many people gracing the front pages of our newspapers seem to have forgotten so I felt it needed repeating.
I’m not talking about sharing your desk. I’m talking about sharing ideas. As a creative marketing and PR company, we have ideas flying around all the time. Consider it a glorified, never-ending brainstorming session. Some ideas are great, some not so much, but we don’t have time to be bashful. We are sure to step up and share because, even if we can’t use our own ideas, we never know when someone across the hall can. Remember, two heads are better than one and everyone appreciates the help with the deadlines and expectations they’re facing.
Use your inside voice
A confident voice level is something to be admired, but yelling is never necessary to prove a point. Volume control has never been my strong suit, but I have always tried to work on how loud I am talking. If you find yourself practically yelling (or actually yelling) at co-workers or, even worse, clients, you might be coming off as abrasive and it might not be a bad idea to take it down a notch (be wary – you could be “creepin’ a bit”)
You catch more bees with honey than you do with vinegar
Ok, so I don’t actually remember if I learned this in kindergarten or if it is just something my mom used to say all the time. Either way, it’s still true. If you need help with something you are much more likely to get what you want if you are nice about it. Berating someone because you need help is only going to make them want to dig their heels in and ignore your requests. However, if you pay attention to your tone and put yourself in their shoes, you’ll be surprised how many people are willing to go out of their way to be helpful and accommodating.
It’s ok to color outside the lines
Remember when you were a little kid and you colored a picture of a blue cat and your parents still hung it on the refrigerator? Obviously, if you did that now, you wouldn’t’ receive the same response because that particular type of creativity isn’t thought to be quite as cute once you’re older. Don’t let this change you too much though; if you have creative ideas don’t be afraid to put them out there. Those who are bold enough to share their “out there” ideas are typically the ones who ultimately come up with the great ideas that are put into action.
The basics of business are quite simple, sometimes we just forget about them. So, when you’re a little lost and trying to figure out what to, don’t be afraid to rediscover your roots and recall the lessons you were taught before and after nap time.