Back to work

Singapore 10th August 2010

The first day back from leave is always tough isn’t it? Certainly if you add some jetlag and climate change in the mix! Your sleep and eat patterns are thrown upside down, let alone that your body has to adjust to sudden environmental change. I arrived back in hot and humid Singapore yesterday after having spent a delicious time in mild France near the sea. I managed to totally switch off and really enjoy quality time, but then there is the shock upon return …how to catch a running train? 🙂

Basically you have to build up speed again and get back into the rhythm. Accept the fact that you were away and that project life has progressed without you (as it should!). If you look at it our aim in a way is to make ourselves obsolete. If the business solely depends on you being present to operate you have a problem as you basically cannot afford to go on leave. Unfortunately for many small lighting design practices, that is the case. Fortunately for me I have now a great team that is able to fill in for me when I am away. Nobody is irreplaceable…even though we like to think we are!

When you build up your team your first thought is to build clones of yourself, because you feel you know best, right? But I learned that that is probably the worst thing to do as everyone has their own character, strengths and weaknesses. The strategy is to bring out the best of each individual which does not mean for them to become another me! On the contrary…there is more than one lighting solution to a lighting problem, so encouragement of one’s creative and problem solving skills is vital. A leader should not be afraid to create student that can beat the master!

To get back up to speed my first task today was to get an update from my team on the progress and any issues that need my attention.  But sideways it also allowed me to see how each had progressed individually in growing to become a great lighting designer…

10. August 2010 by Martin Klaasen
Categories: Education, lighting design practice | Leave a comment

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