It's "Leap Day," folks!
That one day that appears every four years to extend February even longer than this month deserves. I'm not sure why Leap Day couldn't appear in nicer month, like June when it's warm but not too hot. Or how about October, when the fall foliage is so pleasant? But NO, it's in February. When the weather is cold and slushy at worst; indecisive, at best.
Sometimes, like the month of February, we really do want some people to just go away, to take a flying leap, as it were. Sometimes, we create rules and procedures or post signs to keep those people away. I found such an instance the other morning when I was going to get my morning bagle. The Tavern is a restaurant here in town that makes one of the best "slider" pizzas anywhere. They're located in a busy strip mall near a very popular deli (not to mention my favorite bagel/muffin spot). I can understand why they posted this sign. The parking over the lunch hour can be downright attrocious. I've had to play parking lot vulture more than once, and I'm sure some of the parking angst has spilled over to their lot.
I've heard a lot of grousing about their sign, and I can understand why. The tone pretty much has all the charm of a porcupine in a barbed wire coat. In trying to accomplish something, they're creating some undesirable consequences; namely, people who might be otherwise be customers do not wish to eat there.
I've talked on this blog before about being engaging with our accomplishments. We want to create the conversation and curiosity to draw others in, not push them away. Granted, there will always be those undesirables we wish to keep away from our accomplishments (or I wouldn't have a job as an office politics consultant). Still, in our efforts to keep away the "undesirables," are we creating messages (rules, policies, etc.) which send the desirable stakeholders away as well? Do we just consider them collateral damage?
Just some thoughts as we wrap up the month.