Choose Your Reindeer Wisely

Choose your Reindeer wisely was a thing I had to learn the hard way.

I have Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen. Comet, Cupid, Donner and Blitzen and of course there’s good old Rudolph the red nosed one. But, you don’t recall the LEAST famous one of all… Distraction? Probably not. I wish I didn’t… I had to get rid of him. Though, I did learned a lot from the whole Distraction misadventure.

Choose Your Reindeer Wisely

It was a few years back and I needed a new reindeer as a fill-in position. You know if one needs to go on vacation, or medical leave. Reindeer and Elves have unions too now. You need just the right sort of reindeer for pulling the sleigh. It’s a challenging and very important job. But I was… busy. Recruiting and hiring a new puller was just one of the scores of things on my honeydo list. So I took the easy route. I know, I know… never take the easy way out. I did a quick scan of the resumes sent in and made a short list for my elf in charge of the reindeer review group, and told them to grab the first warm, antlered-body that was a halfway decent canidate. Did I probe to make sure that Distraction would be a commitment, a team player and could fly straight? NO! Did I do a thorough background check or involve other reindeer in this process? NO!

Distraction was appropriately named all right. After a short period of putting his best foot, or I should say his hoof forward, the issues started. I ended up spending WAY too much time working with Distraction, retraining him, counseling him and handling the complaints about him not playing the reindeer games. Pretty soon he was bringing the whole team down. All because of one Distraction! And all because I cut corners and allowed this Distraction to join our team and cause way too many Distractions.

That was then. Now I do things much differently. Through this Distraction debacle, I’ve come to realize that:

•Because it’s our employees that ultimately make our plans and goals happen, staffing is my single most important responsibility.

•The time I spend hiring the right way is nothing compared to the time I have to spend dealing with the wrong reindeer. Choose your Reindeer wisely

Learn from your Distractions.

Happy Holidays from Father Yule John!

Part of the What Would Santa Do “WWSD” Series.

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