I had my monthly management training last Wednesday. It’s hosted at a country club in Rockford. Most of the time, we’ve had some pretty interesting topics. I have to say I’ve learned a thing or two. And it’s definitely been a challenge lately. Sadly, not because of what was going on in the course, but what was happening on the course outside.
We meet in a banquet room on the second floor. Two walls of windows give us a great view of the golf course. When I started going in January, it was no big deal. There’s nothing bleaker than a large empty expanse of field covered in snow under a steel gray sky and bracketed by the skeletons of trees. However, as the months progressed, the view outside got less and less ominous and more and more inviting. The snow melted by January. The grass became that uber-green color that only golf courses can attain. The clouds evaporated by summer, leaving a clear blue expanse. The training is part live and part on DVD, with some pretty good people from around the world. However, the golden sunshine radiating in would make the projected picture dim and lifeless. It was hard to focus on problems with problem people or thinking of ways to better communicate when the shiny leaves on the trees outside were dancing in the breeze, waving to me.
Come on out and play with us, Bob. That’s right; the trees were calling me by name!
The people! Did I mention the people? All of those people almost-skipping from hole to hole outside the windows. I so wanted to join them and I don’t even play golf! It was like being stuck in a college class on Friday afternoon in May. You could hear the laughter of the weekend already starting without you. It was like being grounded during summer vacation.
But last Wednesday, we covered the best topic we’ve had up to this point. I really enjoyed the presentation and we did a number of exercises that made a lot of sense. I like practical applications of what we’re supposed to be learning. It helped me stay focused on the class at hand. And – I’m pleased to report – the weather was lousy.