If you got hit by a bus …

Flatline Heart MonitorIf you got hit by a bus on your way to work one day, could your team, department or business run without you? How easy would it be for someone to step in and assume your responsibilities until you were able to return to work? Would the disruption and inconvenience to your internal and external customers be extreme or would it be a recoverable blip?

I believe we need to hope we never get hit by a bus, but put a plan in place in case we do. That means if you are responsible for payroll, someone else knows what needs to be done in case you are not there. That means a list of who to call for what needs to written down and shared with your team, instead of keeping that knowledge in your head. That means all that information that you ‘just know’ and share when training a new team member is documented and incorporated into a training document.

Hoarding knowledge and information may make us feel indispensable, but in the world of business, being indispensable is not a good thing. If we truly care about our internal and external customers, we need to ensure that the service they expect from our business will continue with or without us.

So … if you are the only person who knows how to (fill in the blank), go in to work today and identify one or two other people who have the ability to take that role or task on in the event you can’t. Train them, support them and then watch out for buses!

4 thoughts on “If you got hit by a bus …

  1. Hi Laurie

    I could not agree with you more on this topic. I have been writing protocols and training staff to do my work and each others so that when one is gone we can carry on without disruption. I also am always thinking about who I will raise up to be my replacement. I would never want to leave my office in bad shape

  2. Thank you for the reminder, Laurie.

    It has been a predicament for me as I do have a very scpecialized book of knowledge in my head, but am running the department, so to speak, by myself. At this time, there really is no one to transfer it to. It probably is time for me to bring that up to protect our interests and cross train some folks.

    As always, a good lesson

    • The importance of this has become so clear to me in the last while. The development of documents that share knowledge and outline specific details is time consuming, but much less time consuming than others trying to wing it or figure things out as they go along. Good luck finding the right folks to help protect your interests.

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