While standing in the Home Depot (a home improvement store) check-out line, with a pile of supplies in my cart, I heard a repeated announcement over the speaker system informing the store associates that “Power Hour” was beginning. This message was given three or so times in the space of five minutes that I spent checking out, and so my curiosity was piqued by the seemingly importance of this broadcast.
Later that day, I conducted some research into what “Power Hour” was all about. I came to learn that the concept of “Power Hour” was initiated by Marvin Ellison, a division president at Home Depot. Ellison’s key objective for his division is to win back customers during a time when many people don’t want to spend. He believes this is so vital to Home Depot’s long-term success, and ultimately survival, that he asks team members to dedicate a specific time period during the day, and their complete focus, to customer service. For Ellison’s Home Depot stores, “Power Hour” is initiated during the hours of 10 am and 2 pm on weekdays and all day on Saturdays and Sundays. But for you, “Power Hour” could be at any time, any day, and with any focus.
I believe that the concept of “Power Hour” can also make a difference for you and your organization. While customer service may not be your focus during your own “Power Hour,” use this time as an opportunity to step away from short-term demands and making a strategic shift into a forward thinking mode. For most people, “Power Hour” is most effective if you start early in the day when your mind is fresh. Set aside a specific time; make an appointment with yourself. Consider changing your environment by moving away from your regular work situation. Lastly, be spontaneous as you think about the future. Remember, strategic opportunity is where innovation and forward thinking meet.