What is the first thing you do every day when you get to work?  You do the same thing every day, more than likely?  But, is your office morning ritual helping you succeed?

Humans are creatures of habit.  Doing the same thing every day, in the same order is very typical.  Think about it – you probably have a ritual you follow at home even before you leave for work!

You can use this trait to your advantage.

Having an office morning ritual is fantastic time management tool and efficiency tactic.


First, create a list of the most important things you do that also have the most significant impact on your results.

There is a rule called the Pareto Principle that states 80% of your results come from 20% of your work. Identify that 20% and make a list.

I would guess that building relationships, conducting inspections, and observing employees are somewhere on that list.

You want to build these into your habits and your routines.  But first, let’s look at the process of how habits are created.


Habits are formed through a process of a trigger > leads to an action > results in a reward. Don’t get stuck on the reward part; a reward can just be a good feeling or avoiding a bad one.

Think about brushing your teeth.  It’s a habit and the reward is fresh breath.  Small rewards count toward building habits.

To build a habit, you need to focus on the trigger.  You need to identify a trigger that will create the action you want to take.


There are so many things that can be triggering your current office morning ritual.  A trigger is an event that happened right before the habit action.  Think about what you do and the actions right after.

  • When you open your office door, what is your next step?
  • After you get your coffee, what do you do next?
  • The computer comes to life, do you check email immediately?
  • Every time you pick up your phone, what triggered it?

To build a habit, for example, always doing a walk through every morning; identify the trigger that stops you from doing it (email – right? Maybe the phone) and avoid it.


The best way to strengthen a habit is by creating a chain of similar habits.  Probably why drinking coffee, while checking email, & then reading the news is a chain I have.  They all happen in the same place and I read the news on the same device as I read the email.

For work, create a chain that focuses on the 20% of your work that is giving you your best results. Chain them together one after the other. For example:

  • Get to the office and drop your stuff in your office, but don’t sit down (avoiding a trigger to check email)
  • Get a cup of coffee and talk to managers and employees (build relationships)
  • Conduct a walk-through inspection (you’re walking around anyway building relationships)
  • Talk to employees about your latest safety initiative
  • Observe the employees working and do some coaching

By now you have been at work a few hours, and you have already knocked off the most essential things you should be doing.

By chaining them together, you are more efficient.  You are getting more done, in less time.  This method also gets you out from behind your desk or stops you from getting stuck at your desk


Start with your morning office ritual, but think about other ones you can put in place.

Right after lunch is a sluggish time, add in a few rituals to beat the afternoon slump.

End of shift rituals are great to prepare you for the next day.  You can clear out emails and prep what you may need (inspection forms) for your office morning ritual.


I loved getting to the office an hour before the shift started.  I wouldn’t even touch my computer, but I would grab my clipboard and do a PPE or facility inspection before everyone showed up.  Then I would hang out in the break room with my coffee and chat with the employees as they arrived.  Before heading to my office, I would make the rounds through sales and the executive offices, as well as the front line supervisors, picking up my mail along the way.

Days like this always made me feel accomplished even before the day started. 

A good office morning ritual sets you up for success.


A good office morning ritual sets you up for success.  Create your own.  Make a list of your most importing tasks to accomplish.  Put them in a logical order, so the triggers are chained together.

I like to write my ritual on a card and reference it until it becomes a habit.

Now It’s Your Turn

Are you brave enough to share your office morning ritual?  I would love to know what it is.  Share it in the comments below.  And, hey – don’t forget to click those pretty social media buttons and share this post with your network.  Thanks!

Hi, I'm Brye (rhymes with sky)!  I am a self-proclaimed safety geek with two decades of general industry safety experience.  Specializing in bringing safety programs to a world-class level and building a safety culture, I have trained and coached many safety managers, just like you, on how to effectively manage workplace safety in the real world.   I would love to help you too.

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