Workplace: Quiet

“Be quiet!” or “Quiet on the Set.” or “Quiet is a way of being.”

To be quiet is to be silent; to not speak or make a sound; to move without making a sound or even to be still; or to be so shy that one is perceived to have a quiet personality.

Quiet can be found in the stillness of the morning just before sunrise. The noiseless moments before a storm unleashes are a pay-attention kind of quiet. When children are at play and you no longer hear them; that quiet prompts “what are they up to? It’s too quiet.” When typical workplace sounds are missing, the quiet prompts investigation.

Workplace: To Do

“Don’t make a to do” means to not make a scene that attracts attention and might cause embarrassment for a person, group, or company. Children sometimes say “don’t make a scene” when they see a parent about to launch into a “process improvement seminar” with an employee at a store, restaurant, or hotel. Maybe you’ve said it mentally, or even out loud, to a spouse, partner, or team member.

Another meaning for “to do” is in the arena of list-making. Most of us manage a project “to do” list at work and another one (or more) at home. Calendar-planner-system apps and companies exist because of people’s to do lists and a need to keep track of project timelines and meetings. Our to do lists drive our activities and goal accomplishments.

Workplace: Do You Hear What I Hear?

When what I say is not what you hear, I have a responsibility to help you hear my message. As a listener, you have the responsibility to communicate what you’ve heard so that we know whether we are understanding each other. One of my favorite things to say when I know I’m not understanding someone is “Will you tell me that again using different words please?” This way I have a better sense of what I’m being asked, being told or being asked to do. On occasion, I find myself asking for a third version of what is being said to make sure that I really am following what is being said. Communication is always a two-way street full of speakers and listeners.

Workplace: Food at Work

Food at work was a focus during my college work years. I worked school breaks in a deli providing direct service to customers. Food handling, preparation, pairings, and safety were a part of our learnings. In another food-position, I was a tour guide in the inspiring Betty Crocker Kitchens which could be toured by the public (unless recipe testing was underway). Everything from recipe creation to food production and packaging was a part of our experience so that we could knowledgeably provide the tours.

Workplace: Project

“Project your voice so we can hear you.” Or were you thinking, “finish the project so we can start a new one!”?

Today, let’s talk about the project upon which people work alone or together to achieve a team, department, or organizational goal. A project is tactical, hands-on, work accomplishment. A project produces a tangible result that those working on it, and others, can see.