Oooo, the green eyed monster…

I try not to be jealous of things; green is such an unbecoming colour on me…

But two things on this post here on Alexander Kjerulf’s blog set me off all sorts of emerald ๐Ÿ™‚

Firstly, Alexander is ‘Chief Happiness Officer’… as it says on his bio, he “speaks and consults in businesses all over the world, showing executives, managers and employees how to change workplaces from dreary and stressful to more fun, energized and happy. And profitable!”

Yep, he travels the world and makes work communities happier. 

Brilliant, who wouldn’t love spreading joy ๐Ÿ™‚

And the second thing is the thing he shared about his friend Charlotte’s business cards.. she works at LEGO…

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Wow, how jealous am I?!?!  (clue: the answer begins with V and rhymes with ‘berry’)

(hat-tip to Helen for the tweet)


Anyway, I guess we do pretty well with our Moo cards… over the last three weeks or so, I’ve delighted in the ‘ooo, they’re different’ reaction from loads of different people to the ol’ Moo Cards.

No-one expects something different from big companies, I’ve realised. 

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Here’s maybe why, using a stretchy little allegory…

There’s a professor who when lecturing would fill a jar full of rocks, and ask his students ‘how full is the jar’?  Pretty full, they conclude.

He then gets lots of pebbles, and poured them in.  The pebbles trickle down, and fill the gaps between the rocks.  ‘How full is it now’? 

Well, really full, they concluded.  Then he repeated the trick with sand.  Then again with water…

…what appeared full at first of course wasn’t; there was space in between.

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Now, the original story has a different moral (as I found here when googling for an image of a ‘jar of rocks’), but I’m going to use it for my own purposes…

In large organisations, jobs are like rocks.  They are large, weighty things, because people write job descriptions for them to match a need at a certain time.

Then they are fixed in size and shape for a while.  They never dovetail precisely together.  There are always gaps.  In between.  But if people stick to their rock-shaped jobs, the stuff in-between never gets thought about, or done.

It’s what Seth Godin referred to once in a video I watched as ‘not my job’ syndrome.  Something may need doing, and it could be really obvious to the outsider, but if everyone in a company is rock-like, then nothing will be sorted out.

So for instance sorting out business cards, so that they’re a little moment of amazement when you connect with people on the outside… no-one would write into a job description for someone to do that.

As a consequence, people are surprised when big companies do nice small touches. 

You need people with more fluidity in their roles, so they can feel that they should fill those gaps where they see them.

Because if they’re spotting the little opportunities like that, just think what will happen when they spot big opportunities…

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