Time management tips continued from last week’s post:
I stared out the window, rocking a la Rainman, and kept muttering, “Please let us make it.” Our plane left the gate 15 minutes later. ETA: 7:00 PM. Good thing we had our tennis shoes on.
At 6:25, I got up to use the restroom. I didn’t realize there was someone already in the galley waiting, so the flight attendant asked me to stay seated. No problema. When it was my turn to stand in the back, I asked in my sweetest most un-annoying tone, “So do you have an update on when we’ll land?”
I raised both hands in the air and pumped my fists and did a limited version of a happy dance. I told her about the anniversary, the party, how the gate agent said there were no other flights out. She smiled, too, but cautioned, “We still have to make it to the gate, so you need to add on another 10 minutes or so.”
I smiled again and pointed to my tennis shoes. “I am ready, m’am!”
About five minutes after I was back in my seat, the same flight attendant came up to us. She instructed us to get our luggage and come up to the front. She’d shared our story with the flight attendant at the front of the plane, who in turn shared our story with the folks in first class. They shifted their stuff and made room for us and our luggage. The lady sitting in the first row behind first class stowed my roller board under the seat in front of her since she had extra space. The flight attendants had told everyone our situation, and they were rooting for us.
The plane landed. The plane taxied. The plane stopped. The pilot announced, “Since we’re off schedule, there isn’t currently a gate open. Please sit tight.”
Ugh! We were so close! We just passed our connection gate while taxi-ing.
“Couldn’t you let us out?!?” I quietly begged. My seatmate thought that was funny, but she was the only person who heard me. I was serious, too. I checked the flight status for our connection: On Time 7:15.
We finally made it to the gate at 7:00. The folks at the front of the plane let us get our stuff. The lady who stowed my roller board had it waiting for me and wished me a happy anniversary. (Her 38th was the following month. Happy Anniversary to you, too!)
Since my husband is in better shape than I am, he ran ahead while I lugged my personal item (translation: backpack) and both of our roller boards. I ran for three gates and speed-walked for three gates, ran for three, walked for three. Man, I need to get into airport running shape! It was the longest 20-gate run ever, but at least we were in the same terminal!
I ran up in time to see the end of the boarding line. It was 7:15. Our flight had been delayed by 15 minutes and was not leaving until 7:30. As we stumbled to the end of the line, we heard that gate agent say, “Guess the Seguras didn’t make it.”
We waved our arms and shrieked, “WE’RE HERE!”
Time management tips – Keep in mind that team work (even if you’re a solopreneur) is key to productivity.
We wound up being able to catch our flight because of communication and team work. The American Airlines flight attendant took the information she was given, and took it upon herself to share it with the team – her colleague and our fellow passengers. The passengers were willing to intake this information with open minds and take it upon themselves to help us.
We are ever so grateful for what these kind folks did that day. We were lucky. But in business, we cannot rely on luck. We need to surround ourselves with team members who are willing to listen, process information in a way that makes sense for them, problem-solve, and reach a solution that’s best for the company. Having the right people in place is crucial to productivity.
Who’s on your team?
Get additional time management tips from my other blog posts.