Isn’t it the nano-second moments that show us brilliance or show us danger that catch our attention in a memorable way?

When a child looks up from their creative drawing with a beaming smile, that look shows you pride, happiness, and a sense of security at the very moment.  You might nod your head with pride as well and perhaps give a hug.  On the other hand, when a child looks up at you with a stricken face, you immediately look for what the issue is – a hand stuck in the Panini press?  An embarrassing accident?  In either case, you have taken immediate action to provide an acknowledgment of the situation and taken some kind of action whether demonstrating approval, or quickly moving to a rescue and recovery mode. The child has been heard and valued.

When we are in the workplace, it is easy to forget these nano-second moments are equally important. They give us opportunities to address the presenting situation. Or, we can ignore it and pass it off as unimportant or not something we want to deal with now – or ever.

Think of these nano-second expressions as clues given to you freely by your staff as valuable data that could ultimately save you from a myriad of troubles, or provide a highlight in your day.  All it takes from you is your attention and your commitment to follow through on responding.  One baffled expression provides an opportunity to clarify expectations and prevent errors.  A look of relief says some kind of pressure valve just activated a release – why is that?  What can we do to maximize these nano-second moments to better the business?

Make it a priority to pay attention. Then take the time to explore further what the expression means.  It could save your business dollars.  And it could provide an opportunity to positively recognize an employee.  At the very least, this is an opportunity for employees to feel noticed and valued.  After all, isn’t that what we all want?

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