Imagine this! You are taking a trip with your family to Lanzarote, the Canary Islands. The journey is booked — a hotel room for two and a room for three kids, age 14, 10, and 5.
Travel length: 14 days
You are on the move. Fortunately, the taxi is pre-booked and the luggage is packed, so you will be able to stay on schedule. The taxi is not coming. A misunderstanding has occurred. Your partner was supposed to book it after you wrote him a Post-it note last week. He thought you had booked it because he never saw the sticky note on the kitchen counter. No one was aware of this, except your 5-year-old daughter who fed the note to Wilma, the labrador. A new taxi is ordered in a hurry, which will take longer than usual to arrive. It’s rush hour! The planned two hours at the airport are diminishing.
Stress increases. The teenage daughter (14) can’t find her headset. Labrador Wilma, who is supposed to be picked up in two hours by Grandma, feels the separation anxiety coming and starts barking. “Where is my headset?” the frustrated teenage daughter shouts. “You borrowed it last time,” she says to her little brother (10). It turns out that he has forgotten it at a friend’s. The text she had sent him as a reminder to bring it back home got lost in his eternal Snapchat-stream. In other words, there will be no headset.
The taxi arrives in the nick of time. Luggage is quickly carried out. “It pays to pre-order,” says the driver. Dad and Mom look at each other. “Is all luggage included? Passport, money, ticket.” “Yes!” The youngest one hangs by Wilma’s ear, who barks energetically and wants to join.
Finally, departure. Arriving at the airport, they run through the security checkpoint and rush to the gate to catch the plane. Sweaty and grumpy, they are on their way to a warmer climate.
Now it’s just a matter of turning on the kids’ entertainment. But, where is the Nintendo Switch and tablet? Were they left at the security checkpoint?
Now it will be six hours with a teenager without a headset, a frustrated brother who does not get to game, and a bored 5-year-old without children’s TV. However, the reading aloud mother and father’s Easter crime somewhat improves the mood.
So far Easter has been a challenge, but who can complain over sun, beach and palms? Poor planning definitely creates chaos and can cost you precious time and money.
The lesson learned from this trip is that in the future, communication will not take place on Post-its, nor in a jungle of Social Media, but through direct dialogue. Planning is everything. Staying connected and communicating well is the key for a successful holiday — and other parts of life. The “Post-it Model” definitely has its limitations!
As for Wilma the Labrador, she enjoyed her two weeks with Grandma where snacks rained constantly. Grandma had a technological adventure, enjoying music, gaming, and Netflix.
I’d love an informal chat if you want to know more about improving your communication and staying connected within your business.
Contact me by e-mail or give me a call.