Krug: The winter blues need not get your team down
Krug: The winter blues need not get your team down

OK, so if you are reading this in Maui, Scottsdale or Key West, just stop right at the upcoming third period and then make a right turn.

Feel free to click on the next thing that you think might be worth reading on 1851franchise.com. There are plenty of other options for you.

A story about winte.....

OK, so if you are reading this in Maui, Scottsdale or Key West, just stop right at the upcoming third period and then make a right turn.
Feel free to click on the next thing that you think might be worth reading on 1851franchise.com. There are plenty of other options for you.
A story about winter weather and its deleterious effect on morale isn’t applicable to those who wear sweaters and a coat when it dips down into the 60’s. No, you can just go back to gloating or working on your chipping and putting.
But if you are a survivor of the Polar Vortex, Polar Vortex II (The Return) or Polar Vortex III (Snowier and Icier in 3D), keep reading. I have a little something-something for you that I promise won’t take very long to digest, and may help you to maintain some semblance of sanity.
The fact is, my freeze-zone folks, that your team is at wit’s end over this weather. And it’s difficult to blame them. It’s been unrelenting and brutal for just about the entire country. People from Texas to Maine and everywhere in between have been besieged by weather that is equal parts awful and awful.
This morning, here in Chicago, wind chill readings got down to something insane like minus-40. Yeah, on March 3. There is a reason that most Chicagoans didn’t sign up to live in Wisconsin or Minnesota, and that’s specifically because we like it when winter ends.
On top of that, and strictly on a personal note, by the time my train (painfully delayed by who knows what this time) made it to the Chicago city limits, a really fantastic snow storm had cropped up over Lake Michigan and began dumping snow through air that probably was reading about 5 degrees.
Do you know what we call that here in Chitown? Monday.
Do you know when winter ends here? Neither do we.
Well, of course it will eventually end – knock on wood. And when it does, this town will become the greatest city in the United States again. Until then, greater Chicago is something that falls far short of greatness.
Inside and away from the barrage of inclement weather are our teams, who have faithfully plowed their way into work through what is now going on five months of mayhem. And we love them for it. For the most part, we’ve become immune to it, but nonetheless disgusted. Still, we plug along and make the best of the worst winter that many of us have experienced – ever.
But not every group is as sunny on the inside as the streets are snowy on the outside. And if you find your team struggling to find its equilibrium in this mess of a season from Hell, there’s still time to take action (because, for a fact, Winter is going to hang around for at least another 10 days – at least where this guy roams).
So, here you go. A few thoughts to help you get your team feeling good about itself, one degree at a time:
Bring the sunshine in: A little reggae music goes a long way. If you can’t usher in the beach scene, usher in the beach sound. Pull your team out from under their headphones for some tunes that will get them feeling good. If you don’t believe in the power of happy hour, rethink your position on the subject. If you are not celebrating your wins each week, integrate that into your approach, too. Good things are happening all around you, even if weather isn’t one of them.
Let ’em vent: It’s human nature to complain about the weather, no matter what. Three months from now, our campy weather forecasters will stop throwing boiling water into the wind to make vapor and start frying eggs on the sidewalk. It’s always something, if you get weather that incorporates more than one season. But make it fun, and perhaps create a contest from a round robin that allows the group to vote for the best single word that describes the misery. “Misery” is now off the board, of course. Send prizes to my email address below.
Attack winter with thoughts of spring: I’ve heard reports from some friends and colleagues in leadership whose teams are downright despondent about the polar plunges. For them, I highly recommend making plans for their team’s first spring outing now. No need to consult the groundhog or any other soothsayer. It will get warm at some point. Project out a few dates for the team to focus on and let them count off the days until it comes. It eventually will get warm again. We didn’t use that many aerosol products in the 1970s that we’ve done irreparable harm to the environment…
Let ’em continue to vent: Every time that we’ve thought that this winter was taming itself, another frost clipper has sailed into town and covered our world with ice and snow. We only can control what we can control, right? So let your folks go ahead and vent. A little complaining about cold and ice shared among co-workers actually might get their heads in a similar mindset and united against Mother Nature. She’s tough, and she can take it.

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As always, stay classy.
And warm, too.
Chris Krug is president of the progressive media communications firm No Limit Agency in Chicago. No Limit is a full-service agency whose practice focuses on strategy, brand management, creative campaigns and delivering unparalleled placement in the media. No Limit Agency works with some of the best-known brands in North America, and that’s not a coincidence. Contact Krug by calling 312-526-3996 or via email at [email protected].

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