Too Busy to Develop Yourself? Book an Appointment

Spring is here. For some, that means new growth or awakening. Depending on your part of the country, things that were asleep are now rousing, like tulips, cherry blossoms, magnolia trees, or cuddly bears. In retail LP, shrink plans are in full swing, and driving results through audits, training, and investigations are underway. There’s a lot going on, and it can be easy to put your head down and focus on what is right in front of you. Next thing you know it will be Q4. Here’s my challenge to you: take time to engage with what’s happening outside your company. Much like bears coming out of our hibernation caves, we need to look around and sniff the air a bit.

How do we do this while keeping up with our demanding jobs and juggling other priorities? Someone in my life frequently reminds me, “If it ain’t on the calendar, it ain’t getting done.” Look at your calendar and schedule time to do those things that make you well-rounded. Schedule a daily and weekly time to read industry news. Attend webinars on new topics that feature new leaders and ideas.

Start that LPC, LPQ, CFI, or other coursework you’ve been putting off. Put it on the calendar and make your study time non‑negotiable. Join a cohort!

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Volunteer. Your expertise is needed, and don’t worry—it’s not always a big commitment, so do what you can. Volunteers make much of what you see at industry events possible. It’s a great way to meet others, expand your coalition-building skills, get your name out there, and help worthy causes.

Your expertise is also needed to keep the industry informed. Write an article for LP Magazine. When I go to meetings at various venues, one of the things I most look forward to is the numerous people who have ideas for articles. They passionately share their thoughts with me, and when they finish, I tell them to write about it. No one knows LP better than the practitioners. We will help you if you don’t know where to start. In fact, we have some new contributors in this edition; their fresh voices and ideas—and yours—are crucial to keeping LP Magazine at the top of its game. Can’t find the time to write? Schedule it.

Sign up to attend an industry conference and lock it in. When you’re there, don’t take conference calls or outside meetings, block your calendar. Your company is investing in you to attend the show, so make the most of it. Be fully committed and engaged. Articles in this issue from the NRF and RILA will shed more light on the tradeshows and what’s new.

Lastly, pick up the phone and check in on your friends in LP at other companies. When I see the caller ID from one of my LP friends, it makes my day. A good laugh is sure to ensue as we catch up, and I always learn something. Making time for the little things can make all the difference.

Juggling is an art form that takes practice. Objects of varying sizes and importance take special focus to keep aloft. You may not get to everything I mentioned every day, week, or even month. But if you schedule it and focus on the small things and the big ones, in the long run, you’ll reap the rewards.

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