Ski Butlers management communicates regularly using what we call ‘Communication Channels’ in order to stay aligned on our goals and how we are going about achieving them. The four communication channels we use regularly are the Team Meeting, One on One, Coaching Moments, and warm ups and cool downs. The primary purpose of the team meeting is to communicate what the most important priorities are for the week, so the meeting attendees are all in alignment on what exactly to focus their efforts on for a given week. The next communication channel, the One on One, is arguably the most important of the Communication Channels, as it allows protected time for regularly scheduled face to face discussion. The first half of the time allotted for a One on One is an opportunity for the manager’s direct report to talk about anything they want to. This allows the direct report of the manager to get anything important off their chest before the second half of the One on One, which is the manager’s time to talk about things they need to address. The One on One builds trust between an employee and their manager, and allows both parties to make sure they have weekly protected time to talk about anything they feel is important. The third communication channel, Coaching Moments, are typically unscheduled time, as the purpose is to promote good work, and stop bad habits from developing. A Coaching Moment allows a more formal medium in which to deliver feedback to an employee right after that employee has done something that requires feedback, either positive or negative. The final communication channel is the warm up and cool down. There is a warm up at the beginning of EVERY shift at Ski Butlers, in which the shift manager gives each employee their work assignments for the day, and sets goals for the shift for each employee. At the end of this shift, the same person runs a quick cool down, which is an opportunity to share highlights or opportunities for improvement from the shift, and to hold the team accountable to goals set in the warm up. Now that communication channels have become a regular part of how Ski Butlers employees communicate, I see the benefits of these daily and cannot imagine doing my job without them.
I have had the opportunity to learn how to run a small business in my current role because of the autonomy with coaching style of management here at Ski Butlers. To explain this further, I have been empowered to run the shops that I manage as if it were my own small business. This has allowed me the opportunity to make educated business decisions for my locations without being required to run every little decision by upper management levels. I know that as long as my team and I are making decisions with our business’s core values and the best intentions of our customer in mind, then we will not be penalized for doing so. All of this autonomy is reinforced by our communication channels discussed above, where I always know I have guidance from my manager when I feel I need it. I have had the opportunity to learn the important of self discovery, get my hand in accounting practices, and how to focus on the most important thing that will get you closer to your business goals, just to mention a few other important lessons I have learned. I feel very fortunate to be in a work environment in which I have learned so many valuable management lessons in a short period of time. I encourage anyone with a strong work ethic that wants to pursue their passions in the mountains, and develop their professional skill set at the same time, to check out Ski Butlers as a career choice.