When to follow conventional wisdom and when to throw it out. Also, the dangers of gamification, remember people's names, and survive your open-plan office!
"'Everything is not a revolution[...]' Some things can be reinvented, but others are better off embraced." This was a lesson learned by Josh Tetrick when he started the JUST brand of vegan mayonnaise. Since he was aiming to disrupt traditional food companies, he originally hired only people who were outsiders in the food business. He soon discovered that insiders' expertise in logistics was more necessary than he had thought. Unfortunately, that meant that he had to lay off some of the technology and data scientists he had hired and replace them with industry insiders who could help build a viable food business. Josh had the wisdom to recognize when to pivot, which is essential when starting a new business.
The conclusion seems to be in: open plan offices don't work well. But, they remain "an undeniably cost and space-efficient way for companies to cram more desks and workers into limited spaces and meet the bottom line–which means they’re not likely to go away anytime soon." So, people stuck in them are coming up with creative ways to make their own private space within their open office workplaces. Approaches include: rear-view mirrors on their monitors and building their own walls around their desks.
There's been all sorts of buzz about the New Zealand company that is experimenting with a 4-day workweek. Such a short workweek may not be practical if you are starting a company full time, but what if you're starting a company while working a full time job? The techniques that professionals use to work a 4-day week can help you be as productive as possible as you get your new business off the ground!
Gamification, the process of incorporating games or gamelike elements, is supposed to make work fun, but does it? Or, is it more often a tool for social control? Check out this exploration of the history of gamification and how it is being used today. The dark side of gamification was demonstrated when a Disney resort team members performance was measured using a gamification based process. The result? The gamified performance system became an "electronic whip". Workers were compelled to compete, couldn't take a break and got injured at higher rates than usual. Nothing fun about that game.
Who hasn't had an excellent conversation with someone you just met at a networking event only to have them walk away and immediately forget their name? Or, maybe you met someone previously and now, seeing them again, can't remember their name? It happens to the best of us. Fortunately, you can learn to remember names better. This article comes with some tips and techniques for remembering people's names!