Gosh, it’s already 7:45 a.m. as I jump into the shower after a quick shave. I’ve got little time to spare before an 8:30 meeting. Shampoo my hair, quick rinse and reach for the bar of soap. No soap! Dang, I had this same problem yesterday and forgot to put a new bar in here. I’m not using CeCe’s perfumed bath wash again — I got some strange looks yesterday. Nope, I’m going to step out and get a bar of soap.
I put my towel under my feet and slide towards the cabinet where we keep the soap. I’m dripping water all over the concrete floor, which gets slippery, so I’m trying to wipe the water up the best I can as I go. I find the soap, but it’s a multi-pack wrapped in unbreakable, untearable plastic wrap. So I slide over to my sink area and pull out a sharp object to breach this plastic armor.
Water is really dripping on the floor now and I know if I don’t get it up, CeCe or I might take a tumble. I finally get the bar of soap free and set it on the sink so I can wipe up this water. Now that the floor is dry, I grab a new towel and slide back over to the shower.
After standing under the water for a second, I reach for my soap. No soap! I look out of the shower and see my bar of soap sitting on the counter by the sink. Right where I left it — all the way across the bathroom.
Here I go again, sliding across the floor, grab the soap, wipe up the water, grab a third towel and slide back to my hot shower. Finally, I can finish my shower and hopefully get to my meeting on time.
I’ve been thinking about that bar of soap and the frustration of seeing it there on the counter, in plain sight. It was still out of reach even after I had gotten out of my shower, opened the soap, cleaned up the water and grabbed another clean towel.
For me, that bar of soap represents the collaboration opportunities that get missed every day in our profession. Our team members are right there in plain sight, but too often, we leave them on the counter. We are in a hurry, too busy to focus on what might create a better outcome for our clients and grow our team members at the same time.
Maybe it’s a control thing. Maybe it’s feeling like “I did it” that leads to us forgetting our team members. Whatever it is, what would our client experience be if we collaborated more as teams? When we don’t use all of our resources, clients never experience what’s possible or enjoy the full worth of our business acumen. Just like a bar of soap makes a great shower, collaboration makes a great client experience.