I’ve been away from home for four days, and I’m ready to return. While time away helps me think differently, I find that I need family time in order to truly be at my best.
I miss the sights and sounds of being at home, and the routines that are part of every day and every weekend. For instance, while I might wish I could sleep a bit later, I relish the opportunity to watch my oldest daughter play soccer, and, while not the most “interesting” of activities, I enjoy taking my youngest to the grocery store. And, I look forward to watching a movie with my wife after the kids are in bed.
While there is something to be said for providing ourselves with the peace and quiet that comes from being alone, I’m the type of person who can only work under those conditions for so long, before I need the noise of home.
Sometimes it isn’t always apparent what people need to lead and learn best. It might be total quiet and calm. But, it might also be lots of noise and movement.
We should never assume that any one is preferable to the other, instead, opting to let others self-select, and then, helping them see if what they believe they really need is, in fact, the case.
The best leaders recognize that reflection and efficiency can happen under any circumstances. And, it isn’t necessarily the leader’s role to make that decision. Instead, we have to opt to be the “fact-checker” for those we serve. Is a home environment better for a person than a work one? If so, how do we help that person maximize the great work that they do for others?
For me, it’s pretty clear that I need both in order to be effective. But, a week-long retreat just wouldn’t work. Instead, it seems like I’m more of the “Give me a few hours to myself” variety. And then, I’m ready to get back into the mix.