28 July 2022

The Power of the Daily Line Up

Can you imagine Pep Guardiola or Jurgen Klopp sending their respective teams on to the pitch without having a pre-match briefing to discuss strategy, tactics, and the game plan? Neither would Andy Farrell send Ireland out to a Six Nations match without going back over the game plan and tactics one more time! It’s no surprise that winning teams are aligned around what the game plan is and execute it per the plan. So why is it some businesses cannot seem to get this part right?

Have you ever worked in an organisation where you didn’t know the game plan? Where the information didn’t flow freely, where the communication was inconsistent, and where the left hand didn’t seem to know what the right hand was doing? This creates frustration and lack of clarity, and can be a challenging environment to work in. In the absence to clear, accurate and regular information, team members are left to assume, speculate, or spread rumours about what is happening in the organisation. 

The Antidote to this: The Daily Line Up

I have been a huge fan of The Daily Line Up, The Daily Huddle, Team Stand Ups, or whatever term you know it as for a long time. Earlier in my career, I spent many years working for The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company and took part in several hotel openings. The Daily Line Up was a critical and non negotiable cornerstone of how we did business, and gave us a golden opportunity to refocus our energies on what mattered at the beginning of each day. I know it remains a part of their continued success to this day.

So what is The Daily Line Up? Simply put, it’s a 5-10 minute get together with your team, typically early in the day or at the beginning of a shift. It serves to align the team around the mission for the day, gives you an opportunity to check in with the team to ensure everyone is doing well, and gives you a chance to anticipate any operational challenges before they happen. For guest or customer facing teams, it gives an opportunity to check on grooming and uniforms to ensure your team is looking their best. 

Inspire Your Team: Tapping into The Human Side

In reality, it is also an opportunity for you as a leader to show your team you care about them, to ensure they are engaged and energised for the day or tasks that lie ahead. It represents a perfect opportunity to revisit your values or service standards in a small bite sized format and presents you with the perfect opportunity to inspire your team around your motivational message or challenge for the day or week ahead. It also enables connection, celebration, recognition, and team building.

In Practice: How Does It Work?

It is vitally important that we walk our own talk at McGillicuddy Hospitality: We kick off our week with a team meeting every Monday morning. We use this time as an opportunity to “check-in” with each other, to hear about weekend adventures and happenings, and to refocus around our three company values: Authenticity, Excellence and Impact. We rotate the responsibility to cover one of our three values between each team member. Each person gets an opportunity to do a 10-15 mini workshop on the “Value of The Week”. 

The format is at the discretion of the team member responsible for that session, and can include an activity, a short video for inspiration, or even a team meditation. We’ve had laughter, tears, joy, stress, fear and love all show up in these sessions. We do a one word check in at the beginning of the meeting, and a one word check out at the end – it always amazes me how we can change how someone is feeling (for the better!) by energising them through this important weekly kick off meeting. We follow this with frequent check-ins during the week, which serves to keep everyone on track, and gives them an opportunity to highlight any obstacles or roadblocks that require my intervention.

In Closing: Just Do It!

It is one of the most powerful tools to connect with, engage and motivate/ inspire your team. I cannot imagine working in a team without these critical meetings happening regularly. And don’t just take it from me – Pep and Jurgen swear by it too!