top of page


written by


In hockey, like many other sports, the play area can be split into the scoring region (offensive zone; the section of the ice containing the other team’s net) and the blocking region (defensive zone; the section of ice with your net). Returning from the offensive zone back to your defensive zone is called back-checking.
What you do without the puck determines what happens when you get it... 
The best hockey coach I ever had engrained this into our heads as young players.  It means the right systems and structure in the defensive zone, set you up for success when the play shifts into the offensive zone.
An example of this is the back-check, when a player chases the play back into their own zone to help defend their own net. This can be done by covering the right areas, forcing the puck to turnover. As a result, the play can move away from our net and up towards the other team’s. Since you ‘back-checked’, you prevented the other team from scoring and created a scoring chance for your team.
At work, the right systems work proactively to create down time, allowing you to optimize the busy times where damage can happen.  In the pharmacy world, we use automation with blister packaging, ask prescribers for refills ahead of time, use software to remind us about what prescriptions are coming up, refill anticipated near-due medications when patients ask for others that were previously filled around the same time and synchronize patient visits to promote efficiency.  All examples of back-checking; working hard when you do not have the puck.
Without enough back-checking being done, wait times increase, errors happen, the staff feel stressed and the Pharmacist has less time for meaningful interactions and higher-value scope of practice activities like medication reviews, prescribing and immunizations.
How can you back-check during downtime today?
Skating Lessons

Click on next article...

Eso 2   Load the Gun

Eso 3   A Shovel Full of Esoteric Grit

Eso 4   A Gritty CEO's Mindset

   Back to homepage

bottom of page