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Mind the Gap

Mind the GapThe ... train in London can get you anywhere when you know how to maneuver all the options. Like our subways, London under ground is a busy place. When your train arrives and comes

Mind the Gap
The underground train in London can get you anywhere when
you know how to maneuver all the options. Like our subways,
London under ground is a busy place. When your train arrives
and comes to a stop, you move forward with the crowd,
waiting for your turn to get on the train. A man’s voice
drones from overhead, warning you over and over: “Mind the
gap. . . mind the gap.”
There is a crack of about 4 – 8 inches between the platform
and the train, where any number of things could fall
through. You could lose anything in it: a shoe, a foot,
change, a purse could fall into that gap and never be seen
again. There is also a small difference in height that could
trip you up, so you may need to step up or down a bit as the
train will probably not be level with the platform. So every
few seconds, once the train arrives, the kind gentleman
reminds you to pay attention to that gap. And you do because
he sounds so arresting and credible.
Mind your gap Managers need to be reminded to mind the gap,
too. We need to develop staff who know how to handle all
those situations that fall between the cracks. When not
minded, these gaps can cause people to falter or cause any
number of losses. Today’s workers handle more unpredictable
situations than ever. The solutions for most of these are
not outlined in a policy manual. Those that are, usually
occur so far away from the manual that it’s not handy
anyway. So we need staff who can figure out how to respond
to anything.
Internal policies>>> gap <<< External regs
Policies teach staff the internal rules and external
regulations, but neither of these address events that are
unexpected or unexplained. Our gap to mind then is the space
between internal and external expectations where anything
can happen, and often does.
How do we prepare staff for minding the gap? By becoming a
good coach, like the recorded voice. The good coach makes
sure that staff know 1) the philosophy, why? 2) the
information, what? and 3) the structure, how? of every task,
every form, and every procedure. When they understand the
Why, What and How about all facets of the organization, and
of their job, staff will be more likely to be able to fill
in the gaps that inevitably will arise. Because in this
fast-moving business world of today, we have more unexpected,
unthinkable, and unexpected events than ever, as we work
in a world that is unpredictable.
So. . . mind the gap!

Linda LaPointe, MRA. Learn more about the three roles of a successful coach, and get the free E-Tools News atBusiness Management Articles,
http://www.thenewsupervisor.com

Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Linda LaPointe, MRA, is the author of the book, The New Supervisor, in which she explains the ABCs of developing self-managed staff to reduce stress and increase loyalty in the workplace.



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