Find your pace

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Like a good runner, pace yourself and exert energy at the correct times to prevent burnout.

September 7, 2021

After the last 18 months of extreme hustle, do you feel like you’re in a sprint or a marathon? What about your staff?

Make sure you are setting the proper pace for everyone at the nursery and preventing stress and exhaustion (physical and mental).

In our State of the Industry report (beginning on page 32), we liken the COVID sales frenzy to a marathon and how important it is to have stamina and celebrate the victories.

It’s a bit humorous for me to talk about running, since I am not a fan of that particular activity. In fact, if you ever see me running, you should just assume there’s something mighty fierce chasing me. Since I’m not familiar with all the details and guidelines when it comes to running, I looked up “how to find a running pace.” I had one of those 2x4 over the head moments when I read the definition.

This is from The Run Experience: “To understand your run pace, check your rate of perceived effort. The rate of perceived effort takes into account how you're feeling during the run and what actions you can take at that level of exertion without being completely out of breath.”

Whoa. That’s excellent advice for anything in our personal and business lives, right?

Did everyone go on autopilot of sorts this season? That is a classic reaction (I’m guilty of it), but when you’re finally finished with your project (or growing and shipping season, as the case may be), it’s likely you feel like death warmed over.

As we go into another season full of unknowns – more than the typical season – I think we should all find our “run pace” even if we’re not donning running shoes and wind shorts.

Check in with yourself and ask, “How do I feel at this stage?” then identify the actions you need to take so you’re not losing your “breath” (think: temper, attitude, concentration, etc.).

Next, do the same for your staff.

Perhaps this pace exercise could lead to something bigger like implementing an employee wellness program, which will help improve the health and productivity of your teams. The Society for Human Resource Management ( says a wellness program lowers health care costs, reduces absenteeism, achieves higher employee productivity; reduces workers' compensation and disability-related costs, reduces injuries, and improves employee morale and loyalty.

In a nutshell, SHRM suggests a few steps to create a wellness program.

  • 1. Conduct assessments
  • 2. Obtain management support
  • 3. Establish a wellness committee
  • 4. Develop goals and objectives
  • 5. Create a budget
  • 6. Design the components
  • 7. Select incentives and rewards
  • 8. Communicate the plan

Find more detailed information here:

If you decide to implement this plan, or already have one, let me hear from you.

Take care of yourselves and your people. We still need you!