The first and last thing a leader does in a day sets the tone for everything in between. Recently, Denise Chudy, COO and president of LotLinx, shared her mindful approach to starting and ending her days.
LotLinx uses a VIN merchandising platform to connect car dealers directly to shoppers, eliminating middlemen. So it makes sense that Chudy would devote first-thing/last-thing time to connecting with her team — just not via late-night email.
FIRST THING: The first work thing I do every morning is clear my head on my walk to work. To be the best coach, mentor and leader, I make a conscious effort to let go of the noise that could take focus away from my team and customers.
On that half-mile walk from the train to LotLinx, I drop thoughts of: what's for dinner, did I remember to text my mom, why did that guy talk on the train’s designated quiet car, will I exercise tonight.
For those 12 minutes, I tell myself to "let it go." When the elevator doors open, I smile to greet my team and make the day as productive and fulfilling as possible.
LAST THING: As I leave the office, I walk the floor to see who is still at his or her desk. I often offer to help someone who has been at the office later than me several nights in a row.
I also take mental inventory of who is still there so I can thank them later or review their workload with their manager to make sure it is balanced.
Then, I check email before I go to bed. I rarely send an email late at night, though. Rather, I pre-schedule those to be sent in the morning. No need to cause a sleepless night for a team member or customer.
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