I’ve put together countless business plans at my corporate job. The plans aim to improve this by x%, decrease that by y%, or deliver something that saves $z million per year. I spend a lot of time creating them—sometimes taking my entire leadership team offsite for an entire day.
When done right, they help.
Through the years of creating plans, checking the results of our work, and shifting strategy as needed, I’ve noticed that a lot of people have never been taught how to set effective goals (yours truly included). Because of this, I studied and tested the proven principles that allow high-achievers to get clear, get motivated, and get things done.
Then as I coached people on what I’ve learned, I began to wonder what would happen if businesses helped their employees create life plans that were just as clear and compelling as the business plans they expected them to turn in.
It’s a weird thought isn’t it?
I mean, we’ve all heard people say—
You should leave your life problems at the door when coming into work.
And leave your work stuff in the office before heading home.
But is it really possible to compartmentalize work life from home life? Or is the barrier between these two areas more like a screen door that allows life from one side to go back, forth, and into the other?
I imagine how surprised employees might be if they opened their inbox tomorrow and found an invitation to a life-planning workshop.
Huh, my boss actually cares about the goals I have outside of the office. That’s pretty sweet.
I also think about how many less missed work days people would have if they were better equipped to develop healthy habits that reduce stress when they’re overwhelmed by responsibilities. And how much more focus people would have because their family issues aren’t distracting them throughout the day.
Do businesses fear that if they helped their people define and accomplish their big ambitions outside of work, they’d be distracted?
I don’t know.
My theory is that the distraction comes from waking up in the morning not knowing what they’re getting out of bed to achieve in life—whether that’s in their 9-5 or 5-9.
What do you think?
Until next time, cheers to seeing employees as more than a(n) [Insert Job Title].