Dirt IS Good

muddy-woman

An office colleague of mine was trying to convey the attributes of infrequent showering as a benefit to the environment, and her body, after reading an article in a leading Australian newspaper*. My altruistic persona understood the associated advantages with water and soap conservation, and for that individual sacrifice I was indeed grateful. However, I must admit that I was struggling to find common agreement with the potential impact on her personal hygiene and that unique, and highly distinctive human odourfication.

That night, whilst driving home in my air-conditioned clean car cocooned from all external negative atmospheric influences, I thought objectively about my colleague, and I came to the conclusion that Dirt was actually a very good thing, particularly for the process of fostering innovation in the corporate office. No, I’m not suggesting for a moment that a dirty unwashed body should be encouraged, particularly as I am still a strong believer in the virtues of daily ablutions, but I am purporting the advantages of having a “dirty mind”, one that is openly shared and encouraged amongst all employees.

Now for all of you that do have a “dirty mind”, immediately stop, go no further with your thought processes!  When I use the term “dirt”, I mean; mud, soil or clay….yes, that Dirt.

In the corporate office, there are many ideas generated, some great, others, well, not so great. However, many of these hypothetically brilliant ideas experience a relatively short creative life that quickly evaporate before they can be progressed to a state of potential future commercial benefit.

Think of a plant that needs time to cultivate roots in dirt from which it obtains the necessary nutrients for growth. If it is left unprotected without the life giving benefits of soil, it soon withers and dies. Similarly, your thoughts require a “dirty mind” to take hold, grow and develop. Here the “dirty mind” is your business culture and it needs to be one that is rich in a variety of ideas that support these fragile seeds of creative thought. Should your business be lacking the “Dirt” and be more like an arid desert where endless restrictive procedures prevail, then innovation has no hope of developing.

Yes, Dirt is good and a “dirty mind” should indeed be encouraged.

* http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/beauty/how-often-should-we-shower-much-less-often-than-you-think-20150310-140487.html

The Knot of Personality

12597968695_e226edc60b_o

For those of you in HR that make a career out of personality profiling, you need look no further than but down. Yes, forget your Myers Briggs, DISC, and any other expensive testing regimes that you have been reluctantly using until now as the alternative solution is literally at your feet.

This surprisingly simple, and most definitely cost effective methodology, is based upon numerous years of extensive observation of employees in the corporate office. The test subjects encapsulated a broad cross section of age, sex, educational qualifications, professional experience and fashion.

The final clue to this masterly personality classification technique came to the writer whilst meticulously studying the feet of my colleagues during a rather tedious, and most non-inspiring, business seminar that allowed my mind to be free of all corporate constraints and limitations. Thankfully, it is a skill that I have perfected over numerous corporate presentations and meetings, all utilising the time graciously provided to me by my employer.

OK, enough introductory banter, you just want to know the details! So it’s time for full disclosure.

The key to your personality profile is in your shoelaces. No, do not scoff, as this is a serious study that will in some time in the distant future, by a university that is in desperate need of cash, be fully supported by a highly dubious research paper in an obscure academic publication.

Now for the shoelace facts:

  • The Common Knot (aka “around the tree”): these employees are your generalist and cover the majority of the people in your business. The loops are typically uneven which suggests they tend to not tolerate the status quo.
  • The Loopy Knot (aka “bunny ears”): these people have an open, airy personality and tend to have a career that never progresses, but rather circles backward and forward. These people are destined for a career in middle management.
  • The Knot (literally a knot, no loops): these employees are hard-nosed nutcases and should be quickly exited from the business.
  • No Knot: here we are talking employees that wear boots. Theory suggests that they are quite simple in nature as they failed to master the technique of tying their shoelaces when at kindergarten and may have other un-yet diagnosed psychological disorders.
  • Buckle: these employees are a minority and have that persona that makes them stand out in a crowd. They are frequently destined to become CEO/Executives.
  • Bare Feet: Usually an indication of a free spirited individual. These employees are typically found in the marketing department.

So next time you are in a business meeting sitting with some colleagues, let your eyes wander under the table and focus firmly on their feet. Their personalities will be most evident and readily understood. It’s that simple.

Commandments for Casual Friday Attire

670px-Dress-Professionally-Step-6

According to the Originator of all corporate knowledge, “In the beginning was the Office, and the Office was with The Employee, and the Office was Innovation”.

And the Originator provided The Employee with 4 days of boring corporate attire. But on the 5th day, the Originator decreed that Innovation would prevail. This 5th day, The Originator named “Casual Friday” and it was announced to all the Office, and it became Law.

I’m sure all those involved in the corporate office have memorised these wise and trusted verses from the Book of Business. But do you really put it into practice?

In my role as Director of Thought Creation in the Faculty of Fictional Innovative Fashion at some soon to be developed leading university, I have made extensive detailed nanosecond studies on the creative benefits of “Casual Friday” for The Employee, and for the Originator.

Firstly, the Originator would be displeased by the study findings, as The Employee is not generally demonstrating the term “casual” in it’s purest form.

A Google search of the word “casual” states, “clothes or shoes suitable for everyday wear rather than formal occasions”. So why is it that so many employees in the corporate office have difficulties following these revered verses from the Book of Business? Is it because they are non-believers of the corporate faith? No, I don’t think this is the case, as many employees will attempt to accommodate the required mindset change on the day of 5, but their attempts seem to have been misguided, or mysteriously corrupted, by some negative forces outside their control?

But relax and take heed as corporate salvation is at hand for those that have their ears, minds and clothing wardrobes open, and fully receptive. All The Employee needs to do is to follow these simple and easily understood 10 Commandments of Attire to attain the mental state of “Casual Friday” wellbeing.

  1. Thou shalt not wear a business suit, skirt or dress.
  2. No black shoes will adorn your feet.
  3. Thou shalt not wear any clothing item branded with the Corporate Logo
  4. Thou shalt not covet thy colleague’s clothes
  5. Thou shalt not wear the same clothes that you wore the week before
  6. Thou shalt honour a colleague that wears a bow-tie
  7. Thou shalt turn the cheek when a tartan kilt is worn
  8. Thou shalt not take the word Fashion in vain
  9. Thou shalt wear clothes as no public nudity is allowed
  10. Thou shalt enjoy this day, think differently and experience an innovative thought

By adhering to these Commandments of Attire, the Originator will be pleased, and The Employee will be rewarded with days 6, and 7, officially allocated for rest and recreation.

Amen

The Joy of Male Stubicular Freedom

shaving-advert (1)

It happens every morning, and is particularly accentuated following a long weekend, or an extended period of annual leave. It’s when men throughout the world have a good hard look at themselves in the mirror, sigh loudly with despair, and then initiate that reluctant deed of mass facial hair follicle removal. Alas, a few minutes later, a corporate looking face peers back at the observer as they prepare themselves for the look, and appearance, that complies to their traditional business standards of grooming acceptance.

Let’s stop for a moment and analyse just what’s actually going on here as this facial “stubicular” growing experience is not what it first seems to the onlooker, particularly for those that are female. No, it’s not an act of corporate rebellion, nor another demonstration of male laziness. It is a feeling that men of all ages immediately relate to, sacredly cherish, and have done so since the age of time when the first hair remarkably sprouted from their noble chin. Rather, it is an innate psychological behaviour that typifies the fundamental essence of being a man which is commonly unleashed when relaxing in a non-work environment.   

But, it is more than this, it is a unique masculine feeling that is directly proportional to a man’s sense of creativity and innovation. University studies of some yet to be published academic research, will undoubtedly affirm that when a man frees his mind to think, and to allow ideas to permeate unhindered, his facial hairs have a propensity to grow.

Any Marketing Managers, or HR Managers reading this blog post, please pay attention as the clue to the development of an innovation culture within your company has just been provided. Yes, you need to encourage your male employees to resist the urge to shave. They should be encouraged to grow moustaches, beards and portray long side-burns as “hair fuzz” does indeed equate to innovation. Any advocates of corporate safety will also applaud and support your hairy male decision as the days of facial razor cuts will soon be a unwelcomed sight from the past. So what are you waiting for? As that Nike® slogan says, “Just Do it” so you can quickly reap the furry rewards of creativity.

PS: And should your organization be blessed with menfolk that have a massive hairy chest, well, you are sitting on a copious and hugely under-utilized innovation resource just waiting to be unleashed from their business shirts!

%d bloggers like this: