Just Read: Orbiting the Giant Hairball, A Corporate Fool’s Guide to Surviving with Grace, by Gordon MacKenzie

I don’t consider myself a corporate fool and this post is not about corporate foolery (hint, read the book…), it’s really the opposite.

This work is a find recommendation the most recent Innovation Learning Network (@ILNmuse) in person meeting, which for me continues to to be about random collisions embedded in a pseudo-structured trojan horse. I’ll gather that the meeting is the same for other people (cough our diabetes reversal conversation).

The book is now 20 years old, written by a 30-year employee of the Hallmark Card company, well and thoroughly reviewed on the internet on many old-appearing web pages and sites. The Hallmark angle is the way it’s written in a very engaging and creative way.

Lazy and Busy manifestos

The pieces of wisdom I’m posting here relate to being “busy.”

I found myself wondering if, maybe, it was not okay at this company to have an easy job. My suspicion was confirmed later in the morning when another hapless soul let it slip that a recently assigned project had been smooth sailing all the way. Again, the teasing erupted, convincing me that having an easy job was taboo in this corporation’s culture.Orbiting the Giant Hairball: A Corporate Fool’s Guide to Surviving with Grace

I’ve written about mini-retirements (see: March 2017: What Am I Doing Now? #ADayWithoutTed and mini-retirement, & I often (maybe always) greet people who ask how I’m doing with “amazing, incredible, name-your-superlative” specifically because these are not prized responses. Why aren’t they?

I can’t help but wonder whether all this histrionic exhaustion isn’t a way of covering up the fact that most of what we do doesn’t matter. I once dated a woman that interned at a magazine where she wan’t allowed to take lunch hours out, lest she be urgently needed. This was an entertainment magazine whose raison d’etre had been obviated when Menu buttons appeared on remotes..Lazy: A Manifesto — Stay Strong

I’ll say it: I am not busy.Lazy: A Manifesto — Stay Strong

Being a part of a unique medium

These stories you’ve been telling us… I think you got away with all you did because it was Hallmark. No other company would have put up with the things you did.Orbiting the Giant Hairball: A Corporate Fool’s Guide to Surviving with Grace

Hmm…people say that to me, too, except they substitute another organization name for Hallmark.

So, too, if I had moved from Hallmark to another company, I would have altered my approach and style in keeping with the shift to a differnt medium. Why not think of any organization you’re a part of as a unique medium in which you have the opportunity to create?Orbiting the Giant Hairball: A Corporate Fool’s Guide to Surviving with Grace

Leaders and followers

…there were occasions when verbal intervention seemed appropriate. One of those times would be whenever anyone said: ‘I wish we had more dynamic leadership around here.’

I would respond:
‘I wish we had more dynamic following around here. That’s where the real energy of an organization comes from.

Orbiting the Giant Hairball: A Corporate Fool’s Guide to Surviving with Grace

Allow those you lead…

To lead.. when they feel the need.

All will benefit.

Orbiting the Giant Hairball: A Corporate Fool’s Guide to Surviving with Grace

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