I thought I’d write this before we forget completely what coins or “change” looks like. Before the digital world takes over completely.
There was a time when we paid for things with cash…you know, dollars! Most of the time, we would pay for something we would get money back, called “change.” Then, what happened to these pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters?
Often, we would put them in our pockets, and later find them in between the seats of our car, or under the cushions of our couch. We would lose them, misplace them, and forget about them. After all, what can you do with change? You can’t really buy much, if anything with pennies and nickels.
But then there were the frugal folks, the wise savers, the people with foresight. They had mason jars in which they put their loose change. And they would let the change build into something. They had the patience to wait, and the wisdom to enjoy the build. They used change to build as “funny money” to do with whatever they wanted or build it for vacation or a special thing they wanted. Loose change was valuable to them, they used it wisely.
Today, there are employees we treat like loose change. ….we treat them like they were disposable goods…we can take them or leave them, it doesn’t matter. Many years ago, I heard a retail store owner tell an employee, “hey, I’ve got the green, you provide the grunt!” Loose change.
But what if we had a metaphorical mason jar for these folks? Instead of treating them like loose change we treat them with value that can build. Value that makes a difference in the long haul. A value that makes a difference to our customers. We treat these employees with high regard because they have high value. We treat them with respect because while I might not see it today, as they grow their impact becomes exponentially significant, to our organization and more important to our customers.
Dear leader: examine your heart. Look deep into your emotional pockets, the crevasses of your couch and the cracks in the seats of your car for any sign of loose change. And when you find it realize its value.
Of course, we are talking about the people you lead…your team members and employees.