The Cohabitation Code of Bear Conduct

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I understand that you adults now need to spend time working from home, but let’s get things straight, there needs to be rules. For many years, we Teddy Bears have lived in peace and quiet whilst you grown-ups have gone to work and had a human life. Well, if we are going to spend more days together, or potentially weeks in close proximity, things need to change.

As such, we, your Teddy Bears have banded together and have developed a Cohabitation Code of Bear Conduct. If you don’t obey it, we will be leaving your household as we are immune to any virus, so the loser in this relationship will be you, not us!

Video Conferencing
There is no need to shout. From our comfortable abode of sitting centrally on your bed in between the pillows, we can hear everything you say, even with our paws covering our ears. So please use a normal indoor voice. Yes, the microphone on your computer is working.

Clothing
Pyjamas were designed as night time wear, not for use during the day. And for those of you that think that you are clever by wearing a business shirt on your top half, with a pyjama bottom under the desk, everyone knows what you are doing so the only fool in the room is you.

Teddy Bear Attire
Yes, we bears typically wear no clothes. We are comfortable in our nudity, particularly as we have “no private parts” to interfere with any gender identity. However, you humans need to think twice about copying our lack of clothing standards. What is acceptable in the corporate office must apply during the work day hours. We don’t care what you do in the evenings as is portrayed by the continual glazed look of neutral non-interest that we have carefully mastered after years of human behavioural observation.

Sneezing and Coughing
Teddy Bears don’t like baths, particularly soap. As such, we do not like being sneezed or coughed upon and request that you keep a handkerchief in close proximity at all times when you are working.

Throwing
We don’t mind sitting next to your work desk, in fact, we enjoy the social interaction, but please don’t throw us when we are accidentally seen by your computer camera during a video conference call. Everyone has a Teddy Bear, so relax, it’s OK for us to be seen, and we promise not to say anything that might undermine your professional standing with your colleagues.

So, if you want a happy life whilst working at home, the answer is indeed simple. Just follow these five Cohabitation Code of Bear Conduct rules and you and your Teddy Bear will get along just fine. We might even let you give us a hug, even if you break one of them by mistake, so everyone is a winner!

Who killed innovation in your office?

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The mystery needs to be solved. Who killed innovation in your office?

The answer to this question has been baffling those in the know for years, but thankfully the game called Cluedo (aka as Clue in North America) provides any worthy innovation sleuth with the requisite key to solving this corporate whodunit.

For those who have played Cluedo, you will immediately recall that it involves the solving of a murder via the careful and repetitive questioning of your five fellow players, in the ten rooms they may have occupied, armed with the six weapons potentially used by the killer.

The killer is known to you, you just need to utilise the clues provided to identify them.

The Players (6):

  • Miss Scarlett (a person known for their cunningness, aka Sales)
  • Reverend Green (a person of the people, aka HR)
  • Colonel Mustard (a dapper individual, aka Marketing)
  • Professor Plum (known as the thinker, aka Technology)
  • Mrs Peacock (a person with dignity, aka Production)
  • Mrs White (known to be easily frazzled, aka Quality)

The Rooms (10):

  • Kitchen (a place where many sharp implements are located and hidden)
  • Elevator (a place of employee containment)
  • Bathroom (an unlimited source of water, paper and locked cubicles)
  • Office (a desk with many sharp corners)
  • Stationery Cabinet (a source of tape and other sticky items)
  • Meeting Room (contains projectors with high intensity lights and microphones ideal for interrogation)
  • Foyer (marbles floors on which any blood spills can be easily wiped)
  • Reception (individual security checks and photo identification)
  • CEO office (vast stocks of exotic beverages and other hidden stimulants)
  • Ideation Room (many soft beanbags and colourful crayons)

The Weapons (6):

  • Pen (an easily concealed pointy item)
  • Mug (contains hot liquid)
  • Biscuits (can stimulate excessive self pudgification)
  • Powerpoint Clicker (can be hurtled with high velocity)
  • Computer (can be short circuited to initiate the blue screen of doom)
  • Boring employee (can talk you to death)

The game now begins. You ask questions. Your work colleagues respond with the truth, or perhaps a white lie, but with dogmatic persistence, you all eventually come to the logical conclusion as to the identity of the innovation killer.

The room used by the killer may change, also the weapon and their identify from game to game. But, there is one constant variable that typifies all murderers of innovation. That variable is fear. Yes, fear to try different experiences, meet new people, or to fail when experimenting with a new concept. Should you encounter fear in your organisation, then confront it, call in your Innovation Audit Team to root it out before it contaminates and slowly kills any spark of creativity. Cluedo is indeed just a game, however, don’t let the character portrayed as fear loose in any part of your organisation as morbidity and decay will eventually prevail, and nobody wants that, do they?

 

The Corporate Cubby House

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Should you be the Chief Innovation Officer (CIO) of a large corporate organisation that has been tasked with the development of an innovation culture that is truly unique, and one that actually works, then just sit back in your comfortable, expensive leather desk chair as you already know the answer.

The solution is indeed simple. Just go back in time to when you were an adventurous, carefree and potentially naive eight year old who made a decision with your closest friends to build a cubby house.

In case the number of years from when you were eight has become slightly diminished with age, time, and tad too much requisite social sobriety, let me summarize the process that you may have followed.

The Plan
No, you did not have sufficient pocket money to engage a global consultancy organisation to make a vast array of recommendations for you, there were definitely no Powerpoint presentations, nor large committees, you and your mates just decided to do it.

The Selection Criteria
You looked upwards and identified the best tree that could provide you with sufficient height that your dog, little sister or brother, parents, and enemies could not physically assail without personal difficulty.  In CIO speak, these individuals could be classified as the competition.

Resources
This was your initial demonstration of innovation. At first glance, you had nothing, but with a bit of foraging through your parent’s workshops, gardens and potentially those of your neighbors (the term stealing never came into your vocabulary when you were eight), you had all that you required.

Construction
Yes, there was risk, there was failure, and some cuts and bruises, but with persistence you managed to build a structure way up high in the branches that met your immediate needs.

Evolution
As the cubby house fell apart with the passing of days, or as your group of trusted compatriots expanded in number, you found yourselves continually experimenting with new ideas, some driven by necessity (as the rain poured through an unsealed roof). However, the key is to remember how your innovation and creativity could never be extinguished, nor limited in any way, as there was always a solution to any problem.

Status Quo
Once the Cubby House had been in operation for a prescribed period of time (normally dictated by the end of the school holidays), you didn’t rest on your laurels, but you and your mates sought out other new and exciting challenges. You utilized your experience to build bigger and better structures, after all, you were eight, going on nine, and you had many ideas, and much mischief to make!
Now back to you, the CIO.

The solution: Just release those long standing corporate shackles of conservatism and visualize you at the age of eight, and all the innovation that you, and your organisation will ever need will be revealed.

Overcoming The Law of Pudgification

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The Law of Pudgification states, that for every food excess consumed by the eater, regardless of how many attempts are made to lose the weight from your corporately embellished stomach, the consumer’s physical body form will never completely return back to its previous slim state. The extent of this stomach deviation is called the “Residual Pudge”.

Now for those of you that have reluctantly bitten off more than you can chew over the holiday festivities, you may be experiencing the unwanted influence of this Law. If that is you, a word of advice for your planned first day of work return, that being, don’t try and wear your normal business attire because you are doomed to experience massive wardrobe failure. Yes, buttons will pop, zippers will bulge, and fabric seams will be tested to their extreme limit. The unavoidable result will be catastrophic clothing malfunction combined with severe personal embarrassment.

As you nervously approach this first day back in the office, you do have at least three options to carefully ponder:

Option 1: Fast continually for a week and hope that the “Residual Pudge” quickly alleviates. But let’s be realistic, this is never going to happen!

Option 2: Defer your scheduled first day back in the office by at least a month so your voluminous body has an opportunity to naturally deflate.

Option 3: Purchase an “Expando-Suit”.

Yes, for those of you that can’t accommodate Options 1 and 2, Option 3 is an efficient route to pudgification ownership correction.

What? You haven’t heard of the “Expando-Suit”? Well, it has successfully encapsulated the exterior of numerous well-fed corporate individuals for many a decade. No, it is not advertised, but is readily available via word of a full mouth from those that are in corresponding need of depudgification.

The “Expando-Suit” looks like any fashionable business suit so the innocent onlooker would never be the wiser. It can be purchased in a variety of the latest stylish trends, or for those more conservative, in solid grey, blue or black colours (perfect for any lawyers or politicians that may be reading who have partaken of one piece of plum pudding too many), and meticulously meets the clothing needs of both the corporate woman or man. But it has one unique point of difference, that being the fabric that happily stretches around any over pudgified body part with minimal visual cling. Yes, the wearer will look fashionably suave and sophisticated and not like a plastic cling-wrapped piece of produce.

However, a word of caution. The “Expando-Suit” will feel so comfortable to wear that you may forget the reason why you purchased one in the first place. Yes, you need to lose pudge. To assist in this endeavour, the cotton used in the fabric seams (patent pending) will disintegrate in exactly four weeks of continual office wear. So, in order to avoid breaking any HR laws of personal exposure in your office, you have been officially warned!

Yes, the “Expando-Suit” is indeed an option, but let’s be honest with ourselves, the preferred choice when eating is to be conscious of The Law of Pudgification and to minimise any potential side effects that may be looming from overindulgence.

Grey is Great

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For many a year now, many a woman, and some men, have deliberately disguised their prominent locks of grey with a variety of colours considered by society to be more youthful. These hairs may be located on their head, or on other parts of the body that are deemed public, or carefully concealed from a potentially judgemental view.

But for all those that habitually eradicate the grey, it’s time to break the habit and to let your years of follicular experience freely permeate into its grand, and long overdue fullness.

Grey has the mistaken perception of being neutral, boring and lacking colour and vigour. However, this is indeed a palate of naivety and ignorance. In fact, grey embellishes all the trials, tribulations and success associated with a lifetime of true innovation.

Consider the colour blue which has relished the joy of being linked to unhindered thought. Yes, blue provides a perception of boundless insights, but is it the common colour of hair choice in the corporate office? The answer being a resounding no.

Those employees with red hair are uniquely labelled as having certain distinctive personality traits that demonstrate vitality, fun and a willingness to try new experiences. If you have ever worked with a red head in your team, it will be a truly memorable experience and one that will be missed when absent.

The blonde (or yellow) haired co-worker has a range of attributes that exudes a range of desirable qualities which makes their presence a popular choice, so much so that they are synonymous with the term “blondes have more fun”.

Yes, the colours blue, red and yellow have all individually had their place for those that seek the attainment of creativity, as is seen by many an employee dabbling with a hair dye colour application that reflects this desire of follicle ownership.

But what happens if you combine all the knowledge contained within these three colours in equal proportions? The result is the colour grey. Yes, grey.

Grey hair is the colour that should be applauded as it signifies that this person readily portrays an accumulated knowledge base that would benefit any credible organisation.

So, should you be wanting to identify the innovative employees in your company, look for those that have the grey coloured hairs as they possess exactly what you are seeking.

Yes, Grey is Great.

 

Just Whistle

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Every office has one. If you happen to be in a work environment that has two, or more, then you should consider yourself most fortunate.

Yes, I’m talking about those employees who can continually purse their lips and whistle with visible gleeful happiness. These are your co-workers that always seem to “look on the bright side of life

So what is the key to their perceived joyful success? The answer may not be what you think.

It just so happens that their unequivocal source of happiness is derived via the melodious and simple act of whistling.

To some, whistling is just the physical process of puckering up your lips and blowing air in and out with differing duration. But to those in the know, it can be likened to the act of audibly smiling whilst creatively breathing. After whistling for a few minutes, the shape of your lips will naturally take the guise and form of a cheerful person who is willing engaged in jolly activities.

But what about the tune of the whistler? This is the most curious part of the whistling process as some can be melodic, others completely improvised, or humbly repetitive. However, all whistles mysteriously sound rather pleasing to the ear, regardless as to the ear’s owner, or their taste in musical enchantment.

Should you be feeling down, or despondent in your work, the response is simple, just engage your lips into the requisite whistling position, gently blow, and all thoughts of negativity will quickly evaporate into blissful harmonics.

In summary, if you want to be happy, just whistle.

Personnel Staffing Tailor

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In the days of yesteryear, hiring a new employee was fraught with numerous uncertainties and typically required the service of a professional recruiter. The process was timing consuming, costly, and usually involved ploughing through an endless list of CVs, countless interviews, tedious salary negotiations, a job offer, a period of probation, and then finally, if you were lucky, you had a useful new member of staff. If not, you were then back to the start, absent your time, dollars and the few remaining hairs from your quickly balding head.

Enter the role of your Personnel Staffing Tailor (PST). Yes, as the name suggests, this is a new addition to the recruiting business, and one that guarantees 100% corporate satisfaction, complete with a lifetime warranty on your new hire. Your risk, zero.

Now that I have your interest, I’m sure that you will want to quickly utilise the service of your nearest PST. How? Simple. Just ask Siri.

By adhering to Siri’s detailed instructions, you should now be about to enter the business abode of your PST. Don’t be shy, just open the door and go in, even-though it looks like a high-end tailor’s shop. Once inside, you will be greeted by a person that has a welcoming appearance, and one that makes you feel completely relaxed and comfortable. Which, they should do on all occasions for every prospective buyer, as they have been matched to your individual personality requirements to ensure you complete corporate shopping ease. Yes, they are a fashionably dressed humanoid, fully equipped with a remarkedly superior artificial intelligence.

Once seated in a perfectly fitting leather viewing chair, together with any nourishment that you desire at that point in time, your charming PST will ask you to list the full personality traits, qualifications, experience, gender and physical appearance that you require with your new hire.

Equipped with the completed list, your PST will now mix and match your potential new employee via a meticulous arrangement of humanoid features and downloaded artificial intelligence Apps (just like the Apple App Store) to fulfil all your business requirements. Once done, your new employee will quietly sit down next to you awaiting your approval.

So, what are the additional benefits associated with using the services of a PST?

  • Should the employee’s role change in the future, just refresh their accumulated Apps, or download additional ones as required for a modest fee. Your PST will have a stock of all the latest fashionable ones!
  • Your new employee will never need sick leave, annual leave, lunch or coffee breaks.
  • Their hours of work are 24 hours, they don’t abide by the restrictive 9-5 regime.
  • They speak, read and write all languages, even the rarest of dialects.
  • They have a work ethic that perfectly matches your corporate culture.
  • Their clothing attire is never dull and always an inspiration to others in the corporate office.

But, one word of caution, just in case you didn’t read the fine print on the PST contract. You boss has the right to match you with the equivalent AI humanoid, so don’t be surprised if your tenure is limited. But, as they say, that’s progress!

 

Too Hot in the Office?

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Outside, the temperature is a whopping 48 degrees Celsius (118F). Thankfully, those working in the corporate office are happily benefiting from a massive air-conditioner that is steadily pumping out a chilled air woft that ensures optimum employee comfort.

But what if the prized air-conditioning unit should randomly fail without any thermal warning? For those of you that are the Office Safety Warden, on your list of significant staffing impact problems and threats, this one ranks well above fire, floods, or running out of coffee (well, maybe not the last one).

Thankfully, the Federal Directorate of Office Work has developed a Hot Employee Management Plan (HEMP) that provides a readily followed process that will quickly extinguish the unwelcome heat malady that could potentially engulf those hard working employees, and keep any “hot under the collar” tempers well subdued.

1. Remove Clothing
Step 1 is the most logical and most easily enforced, but this step will require the initial distribution of a CEO approved HR Policy, signed by all employees, so that each person knows just what level of clothing can be removed without causing any offence, or embarrassment .

2. Pedal Power
Most progressive offices have a desk equipped with a pedal powered fan that is situated under the employee’s desk that can be readily activated when required. For those employees that are a tad lazy, I’m sure you will be able to readily motivate a colleague to pedal your fan with the right financial incentive so all needs are met.

3. Mobile Phone
It is common for most employees to travel to work by car. This Step encourages employees to sit in their air-conditioned cars and then join any urgent business meetings via a conference call utilising their mobile phone. However, as Safety Warden, before you recommend this solution, please ensure that there is a strong exhaust fan in the underground carpark. If not, you may be facing another problem that could be much more serious.

4. Changing Clothes
Those colleagues in a tailored suit should be quickly encouraged to replace their long woollen trousers with shorts, or a kilt, thereby allowing that wanted air-flow relief.
For additional information:  Claim your Pantaloon Freedom

5. Holiday Room
For those employees lucky enough to work for a progressive organisation that has a “Holiday Room” located in their corporate office, all is good, as each worker can readily book some desirable cooling time at the “beach or the snow”.
For additional information: Holiday Room

But, should all the above Steps fail to provide the requisite temperature relief, then Step 6 should be immediately implemented to ensure the short-term protection of your workforce. That being, invoke a mass office evacuation which commands all employees to go home, thereby removing them from your legal responsibility!

You should then instantaneously adhere to the little known Step 7 (restricted to Office Safety Warden’s only), which requires you to go to the pub and have a nice cold beverage (or two), and with time, you will quickly forget all about the subject of air-conditioning! And remember, tomorrow is another day, and with it, there will hopefully be lots of rain.

 

Forget the Clean Desk Policy, Go Messy!

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For many years, employees in the corporate office have been told to have a clean desk at the end of their working day. However, for those numerous recalcitrants of unhindered mess that have deliberately not heeded the instruction, relax, as you are indeed the wise ones!

Yes, according to a soon to be prestigious university, in the not too distant future, some ground-breaking research will be remarkably discovered under copious reams of randomly scattered papers deeply buried on the Professor’s desk.

Although the handwriting will be a tad illegible, the key findings will be indisputable.

Finding 1: Dementia
A messy desk requires the owner to have a phenomenal memory in knowing exactly in which pile that unique piece of paper scribble written more than 6 months ago had been placed. A clean desk provides no such opportunity to test and improve your mental memory faculties.

Finding 2: Thinking Time
If you add up all the time that an employee wastes in tidying up their desk at the end of each day, you would immediately rescind the instruction. Messy employees are blessed with having additional time for strategic thinking by not wasting their valuable intellect in work distracting activities such as cleanliness.

Finding 3: The Purge
Those with a messy desk are not presented with the potential threat of discarding an important document on a daily basis. They have a more cunning and clever methodology where their entire desktop is typically purged on an annual basis. Afterall, if a paper hasn’t been touched once during that time period, then by default it can be deemed not important and can be happily placed in the recycle bin without any hesitation or doubt.

Finding 4: Security
Now this is the mistaken crux of the clean desk policy, that being, that an unwanted intruder won’t be tempted to steal a document that cannot be seen. But this is where the messy desk has a distinct advantage in that the patience of the industrial spy will be tested to the point of severe frustration as they willingly give up searching for that prized paper gem, owing to the severe lack of order and ingeniously unfathomable filing system.

Now when you add all these four masterly findings together, the true source of the research is disclosed, that being innovation. Yes, if you want to promote an innovation mindset in your corporate office, you should actively encourage mess.

Yes, mess is indeed the best.

 

What your Scarf says about You?

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Following a lifetime of scarf watching and wearing, one can say after years of visual research that this simple piece of cloth is indeed not what it seems and is a tad more complex. One could assume that its sole purpose is to keep the wearer’s neck warm, but this is far from the truth.

The real origins of the scarf go back to the days of when men were men and were unashamedly hairy. In this era of male follicular freedom, men had copious amounts of body hair that exuded unhindered from the top of their heads, right down to the upper surface of their feet.

Men were known to be warm, confident and content with their unique individuality that permeated with an endless array of hair colours, lengths and thicknesses.

Men didn’t need a scarf to keep their necks heated owing to their natural inbuilt thermal layer of protection. But alas, that all changed with the onset of personal grooming that necessitated the desire for a clean shaven neck, face and a carefully clipped head. Hairy mankind was doomed from that day forth.

What happened next was the birth of the scarf to placate man’s now continually cold neck. Coloured neck hair was quickly replaced with a variety of colourful looms and fabrics. The neck wrapping craze spread to include women, children and the occasional pampered pooch.

Now what was the root of this hairy downfall you may ask? The answer is innovation, surreptitiously disguised as personal fashion where everyone seeks their own unique creativity, and wants their bald neck to look visually different so they can stand out from the masses.

But those of us with hairy necks know the real reason, that being jealousy. Yes, not everyone can be the owner of hair, particularly on your neck. So, a message to those unlucky people that do not possess good hair neck fortune, keep wearing your scarves and one day your body may become fluffy. Yes, miracles do happen to those that seek hairy freedom! You just need a hairy belief.