In a week that has been dominated by the attack on Westminster Bridge and the Houses of Parliament on Wednesday I, like the vast majority of Londoners, have just carried on with what I need to do. This week has involved monkeying around with surveys, talking about agility and generally getting distracted.
In a week of customer experience lunches I re-discover that it pays to complain, get creative online and wish more people were like the #timetunneltrain driver.
Whole lotta lunch
Fay Maschler, restaurant critic of the Evening Standard publishes a diary of what we might call her meets and eats
YouTube is a wonderful thing if you like to be distracted by random stuff from people that you like. Whilst rehearsing a choir part from a YouTube track by my local community choir the other night the suggested videos list threw up a thoroughly cringeworthy appearance by Frank Zappa on the Steve Allen Show on 4 March 1963. Cringeworthy it may be but it illustrates the way genuine innovators can often come up against ridicule when their ideas first appear.
If you have been following this series closely you’ll be equipped to build great relationships with your customers and be able to motivate your co-workers with a few killer one-liners and some well thought-out communications. There’s just one thing that needs to be added to spice up the workplace: circus skills. Yes, this is my big take-away from the Fringe: the business world would benefit enormously from regular injections of acrobatics, tightrope-walking and attempts at the seemingly-impossible.
I’m going to tell you a story… no, I’m going to start with a confession – I don’t go to that many comedy shows so what I’m going to say is based almost entirely on the few shows I saw at the Fringe. But, as we consultants say, two data points make a trend and anything more than that is cast-iron proof. Oh, and I’m also going to attempt some humour… what’s that? People heading for the door? And I’ve only just started…
I make no apologies for a second post on the joys of improvisation – this time inspired by seeing the Comedy Store Players (featuring Paul Merton) in an evening of hilarious improvised comedy at my local theatre last weekend. For readers unfamiliar with the improv approach, the audience supplies the source material by suggesting film or theatre styles, character names, locations, jobs and so on. It’s then up to the performers to improvise from that starting point. It’s hard to convey the results of this without making it sound ridiculous – which it is – so I won’t attempt to. (Since it’s played for laughs the ridiculousness is all part of the equation anyway.)
I’ve spent a large chunk of the holiday season reading the papers and they’re chock full of articles looking back at 2008 and looking forward to 2009. Depending on how grouchy I’m feeling it’s either a neat bit of recycling or plain lazy journalism. Whatever, this year I’m not going to be left out and so I’m proud to present the first annual Open Chord Awards for superior customer service.