The Break Room Doesn’t Lie

men taking in yellow chair

I was speaking recently with one of our plant managers when they shared a tremendous insight:

“The break room does not lie.”

What they meant by this statement is that in order to understand what is really happening in their plant, they needed to go to the break room and listen to their team.

To be clear, this isn’t detective work.

Rather, it is “leader” work.

As the leader, it is our job to be inquisitive. It is our job to ask how our team is doing? Maybe one of them has a health issue, or a family issue. Real life is shared when the curtain is down, when the play is stopped, and everyone has a chance to breath.

This is why the break room does not lie.

What about the new company initiative? Is it failing because people are lazy? Or is it failing because of unforeseen complications that management never imagined?

The break room does not lie.

What this conversation reminded me was how important it is for me to walk through our building, have genuine conversations, and get to know PEOPLE. For in order to understand issues, you first have to get to know people.

And coming full circle, this is why this insight is tremendous. For spending time in the break room, establishing relationships with people in their element, is the job of the plant manager.

It actually is the job of EVERY leader.