After we moved into our new house, the air return vent in the hallway got progressively louder and louder. The air conditioner seemed to be working overtime and it was starting to sound like a wind tunnel. For weeks, my wife and I were worried it meant a huge repair bill or even replacement of the unit. Luckily, before we made a call to the repair person, I replaced the filter which was due to be replaced anyway. What I found was that the old filter had bent and was folding into the intake duct. That small obstruction was the source of all the racket.

A three-dollar filter was the cure for the sound and all our worry.

The moral of this story is that you don’t always need complicated (or expensive!) solutions to improve. Keep it simple.

What simple fixes can you make this week to be a better leader and have a better team? Finish what you start? Tell people why things are important? Make an effort to recognize people effectively?

To stimulate your thinking, below are several simple fixes a real team came up with this week to improve their effectiveness:

  • Get clear on what other teammates actually do in a day
  • Commit to monthly meetings with the team to talk about the business and share insights
  • Have everyone be camera-ready for meetings
  • Reach out to others on the team to learn more about them and their story
  • Re-evaluate current processes (some may be outdated and unnecessary)

Pick one simple thing this week to improve. Find a way to take action immediately and set reminders to keep it top of mind. Change can be hard, but sometimes improvement can be quite simple.