Episode 163 •
5th October 2020 • American Lean Weekday: Leadership | Lean Culture & Intrapreneurship | Lean Methods | Industry 4.0 | Case Studies • Tom Reed: Lean Enthusiast & President of American Lean
We’ve all heard the saying a failure to plan on your part does not create an emergency on my part. Isn’t that what often leads to stress? The actions of others lead to a compressed lead time for some deliverables you have to deal with. Great project plans help eliminate the situation, but sometimes you must step in. Here are tips to deal with stress.
Tip 1- Find the real deadline
No one hands you a plate of stress. A coworker can’t hand you stress. Think of how weird that sounds just saying it. How you react to any situation causes perceived stress. What might cause one person to stress doesn’t even phase another person. How we react to situations is based on our experiences and training. Waiting in line at the DMV might stress some people out, others might view it as a welcome break.
Since stress is often deadline related. When someone dumps a job on your plate and says they need it by Thursday and today is Tuesday, find out the real deadline. Pick up the phone and call them and ask, “When is the day that you will get fired if you don’t have this deliverable?”
Chances are, they’ll reply I don’t need it until Monday. Or next Tuesday will be fine. You bought yourself an extra week by asking. This helps ease the perceived stress of a quick deadline.
Tip 2- Keep things in perspective
How important is this task? Will the business shut down if you don’t deliver the work? Will you get fired? Chances are, no. That doesn’t mean that you blow the task off, it means that you give it the proper amount of attention.
Mentally making the deliverable have more importance than it does, increases stress. We tend to make a big deal out of completing a task. It’s just work. Do your best and understand the real importance of the task.
Tip 3- Take a walk
Removing yourself from the work environment helps your mental state. We all know our best ideas come while taking a shower, right? That’s because your mind is free to be creative. Getting up and taking a walk does the same thing. It helps you clear your mind so you can focus on the work that needs to be done.
Tip 4- Get organized
In manufacturing, it’s called 6S. It’s a cleaning and organizing method that puts everything in its place. The saying is a place for everything and everything in its place. Do the same thing for your office environment.
In the instances when you are under a time crunch, spending ½ an hour looking for something will increase your stress. Being organized helps eliminate stress in your life. Set your work area up so you can follow the 30-second rule- you can find anything you need to do your job in 30 seconds.
If you follow these four tips to deal with stress, I know it will be a thing of the past.
As always, it is an honor to serve you, and I hope that you and your company are getting better every day!