The Role of the Wandering “Wofter”

Watching you

Have you ever watched a fly buzzing around a house moving from room to room as it partakes in the delights it encounters along its journey? Just imagine if you could have the ability to transform into a fly for a brief moment whilst at work and really be that fictitious fly on the wall!

Let’s just think about this concept a little bit further from a business perspective.

The humble fly has the opportunity to listen to a variety of different conversations and work practices in a completely non-influencing way and can also utilise the very best scenarios from each participant interaction. The fly is the ideal stealth observer and is able to buzz in or out and focus on specific corporate details without hindrance.

Now if you had many flies buzzing throughout your office you would gather a wealth of learnings which could be shared when all the flies swarmed together!

Unfortunately you can’t actually be a fly, but why can’t there be a role in business for a group of independent observers (for want of a better name I will call “wofters”) that strategically woft throughout the office neutrally listening to each business meeting and then come together to share their observations and insights to benefit the total organisation?

These official “wofters” could be identified by a special nondescript coloured uniform and have a position of privilege in the corporate structure! I’m sure that with time, many people would want to aspire to this role owing to the opportunity to quietly woft in all business activities?

So next time you see a fly buzzing with what appears to be an aimless trajectory throughout your office, may I suggest that you think differently and consider the benefits of the “wofter” in your corporate organisation.

Be a large Goldfish…not a small one

Gold Fish Bowl Jump 089/365 [explore #150]

It is said that a goldfish when placed in a fishbowl, or larger watery space, will grow to a size that is suitable for that particular swimming environment. The larger the amount of available water volume, the greater the opportunity for the goldfish to increase in size.

This got me thinking….

Many employees have worked for quite a while in the same job role where they have fully mastered their position and are now regarded as the expert within their business organization. In essence, they are the “goldfish in the fishbowl” where they have grown to their maximum size potential.

However, what if they were moved into a new role, or transferred into another business division, or leave and join another company? They would still have the experiences that they had established and fine-tuned in their previous role, but they would now have greater opportunity to expand their vision, skills and learnings in the next one. This would be like the small goldfish being placed into a much larger bowl where they could now grow into a more impressive and bigger fish.

The key is to not let your current fishbowl size limit your thinking and career potential, but to always looks for the many free flowing streams that will lead you to a larger and more impressive fishbowl or pond (or even an ocean) where you can swim freely and get bigger!

The Diary of Thoughts and Questions

Journal

When you start a role with a new organization, you typically observe and learn from your immediate colleagues so you can quickly gain an appreciation of how things need to be done. During this process, you are flooded with a broad range of different ideas and processes, including the business culture.

Your mind is continually questioning and exploring potentially better ways to perform your new role. However, most new employees do not raise these new ideas owing to their short time period in the business.

After a few months, the new employee has settled in to their role and is happily following the old and well used and established processes that they were taught by their manager or work colleagues.

But what happened to all the ideas that they observed in the early stages of their employment? These valuable challenging “thoughts and questions” are key to driving change in the organization so it continues to develop and improve!

One solution is to capture all these ideas in the “Diary of Thoughts and Questions”.

This diary would be completed by the new employee at the end of each work day for the first few weeks of their employment. At the end of this time, the diary contents would then be discussed with their manager, and their boss, to explore how the potential improvements could be implemented. For the process to work effectively, all readers of the diary would need to have an open mind and be prepared to consider all “thoughts and questions” whether they be positive or negative.

Change your Label

Shoebox with Business Cards

When you meet someone new in the work environment there is usually an exchange of business cards.

On the presentation of this card, your eyes immediately glance at the person’s name and their job title where you typically place a “label” on their rank in the organization, their skill set and their personality traits.

The person portrayed on the business card also tends to accept this “label” and modifies their personal behavior to be consistent with their job title.

Why not change the “label” and therefore allow the person to be more innovative and creative in their behavior and in the way that they perform their job role?

Let’s explore some examples:

Accountant:  “Numerical Creativity Genius”
Personal Assistant:  “Controller of the Individual”
HR:  “Body Optimization Expert”
Engineer:  “Process Enhancement Consolidator”
Marketer:  “Idea Instigator”
Others….!

Why not get some new business cards printed with your “alternative job title” and see the effect on your new business acquaintances, and how it influences your persona? It could be rather interesting…..?