(By Rod Kurtz)
“Even employees at the most innovative and dynamic workplaces sometimes need a boost on Mondays beyond that first cup of coffee. Try a Monday morning huddle with your team to check the status of various projects, allow your employees to highlight any opportunities and challenges they’ve experienced and expect to see, and hey, even just ask how everyone’s weekend was. As one member of our community mentioned, he uses his Monday meetings as a chance to “high-five” his employees. It’s a good idea.“
I confess, I’ve never been much of a Monday person. That classic scene from Office Space, when an over-perky colleague accuses Peter, the film’s disenchanted tragic hero, of having “a case of the Mondays” always struck a familiar chord.
But a funny thing happened recently—I became an entrepreneur. And instead of wanting to curl up in a ball on Sunday nights, filled with a sense of imminent workweek doom, I now find myself smiling at the possibilities the next day will bring.
I’ve interviewed and worked with thousands of entrepreneurs over the past decade, and one of the qualities I always admire is their near-universal enthusiasm. When your name is on the proverbial sign, when you’ve got skin in the proverbial game, it’s just… different. The entrepreneurial experience is, often, a backbreaking and soul-searching one, but most wouldn’t trade it for the world. Because when you’re an entrepreneur, everything you put into your company, you get right back out.
That’s why entrepreneurs look forward to Mondays—they’re our collective, weekly fresh start, a chance to reboot, regroup, and chase new opportunities. We’d probably do it on Saturdays, but we need to give the rest of the world a little time to catch up.
Almost as an accidental experiment, I recently tweeted, “The difference between entrepreneurs and the rest of the world? Entrepreneurs look forward to Mondays.” I followed it up with a similar post in the new OPEN Forum community, asking entrepreneurs why they look forward to Mondays—and how they prepare for the week ahead. Not only did the chorus of enthusiastic responses pretty much confirm my thesis, I found some great insight from members of our community and beyond.
With that in mind, here are a few tips I’ve assembled, based on responses from our community, to help entrepreneurs avoid their own cases of the Mondays—and make sure, for their businesses, that each week is a little better than the previous one:
1. Make a list.
Any list—goals for the week, a to-do checklist, just something that keeps you focused for the upcoming week. You’ve got a business plan for your company, so why not have one for your week? I like to joke that much of my success can be attributed to Post-It notes, so I’m a little old school, but as one member of our community pointed out, it’s gotten easier than ever with technology, thanks to sites like Do.com or apps like Evernote. The key, especially with to-do lists, is to make each item realistically actionable and specific. If you jot down, “Come up with new marketing strategy,” it’s virtually impossible to check that off the list in one fell swoop. Better to have several specific items related to your marketing plan like, “Set up company Twitter account” and “Shoot new product photos.”
2. Rally your troops.
Your company may not be Initech, the soul-crushing cubicleland depicted in Office Space, but I’ll let you in on a secret—your company ain’t perfect. Even employees at the most innovative and dynamic workplaces sometimes need a boost on Mondays beyond that first cup of coffee. Try a Monday morning huddle with your team to check the status of various projects, allow your employees to highlight any opportunities and challenges they’ve experienced and expect to see, and hey, even just ask how everyone’s weekend was. As one member of our community mentioned, he uses his Monday meetings as a chance to “high-five” his employees. It’s a good idea.
3. Follow the money.
Another member of our community shared that she tracks all receivables expected to come in against what she has sitting in the bank. “It’s a motivator,” she says. And it should be. There are many measures of success for a company, but let’s face it, money is a key one. It’s also the lifeblood that helps sustain it. Seeing a ton of new cash flow on your balance sheet? Maybe you’re ready to expand. Funds drying up? Maybe it’s time to pivot and try a new strategy.
4. Practice being “extraordinary.”
We’re not all natural Monday masters. It takes some work and discipline. The good news is, you have a new chance to practice every single week. One of our community members recommended the book Monday Morning Choices: 12 Ways to Go from Being Everyday to Extraordinary. I haven’t had a chance to read it, but it appears to be a quick and to-the-point handbook for conquering your Mondays.
“Opinion pieces of this sort published on RISE Networks are those of the original authors and do not in anyway represent the thoughts, beliefs and ideas of RISE Networks.”