So, I’m moving countries! Omg. And it takes SO much cleaning. (Or maybe moving isn’t actually supposed to take cleaning – maybe I am finally anti-crastinating.) And so many goodbyes. And so much packing and planning. And so much cleaning. Dang. (And a lot of eBook preparation.) Anyway, so sorry I have been so incommunicado with you lately. I will be back and excited by the end of August I hope! Please stick with me through my slow month, and have a great mois mort as the french say!
A couple months ago an incident may have or may not have happened while I was romantically working at a coffee shop. Let us assume: this story is true, coffee shops are UNromantic.
I am working at cash, like I have been for a while. Person after person comes by, I take their order, ask them if they would like white, whole wheat or multi-grain. Ask them if they would like a small medium or large. I answer their questions about the soup of the day and about our gluten free bread. I review their order with them and ask them if they would like anything else? This happens over and over again, many days, weeks in a row.
It is a Sunday morning and a young, normal-looking (un-good-looking) couple comes in to order healthy, post-workout breakfast. I go through everything, I review their order and I ask them, “Would you like anything else?” The boyfriend says to me, “Anything she wants.”
I took a step back (mentally), and smiled at the camera observing my life. In that moment, I shocked. I imagined a different place and time and that I was in a comic strip. And then I said nothing, and imagined an art project I would make of it.
“For nine decades Fulton Market Cold Storage Company operated in Chicago’s meatpacking district with a full ten stories of freezing storage situated close to major railways. Last summer the company decided it was time to start fresh in a state-of-the-art facility outside of Chicago, so the building was sold to SRAM, a bike component manufacturer who will use the space for its global headquarters. Architects Perkins + Will were hired to help convert the ice-encrusted space into a new, modernized office building and were also tasked with the most epic refrigerator defrost in history. Luckily photographer Gary Jensen was asked to snap some incredible photos prior to the thawing which was actually caught on video (sorry no embed). See more photos on his website. (via gapers block)
UPDATE: I’ve been asked to clarify that the building owner is technically Sterling Bay and the architect of the conversion is Hartshorne and Plunkard. SRAM is a potential tenant in the building and Perkins & Will is their architect.” via Colossal (amazing art and installation blog)
Beauty is embarrassing.
I am reading Seth Godin‘s book Linchpin, that I originally heard about through a NY Creative Interns recommendation. Right now I’m really into learning and reading as much about entering the business world as possible (… as much as I find not-boring), and Seth Godin falls right in there. If you’ve never heard of Seth Godin, he’s an author and speaker who focuses on marketing, with a penchant for supporting the creative industry. He also runs one of the most popular marketing blogs in the world. (Check it out. Its, um, pretty good.) Anyway, the book talks a lot about, not necessarily needing to change your job, but being indispensable in the workplace.
It got me thinking about stuff.
To me, the guts of the book emphasize: whenever you are working anywhere, it essential to input your identity and creativity into your work, because that is what makes you indispensable. Its essential to do this, not just because it feels good, or creates a better experience for you, or makes you happier with your job, but because it is better for the company and makes you necessary.
Making yourself ‘indispensable’ means that if you left, they could not replace you as you. I’m not saying they couldn’t get another nurse, junior graphic designer, store salesman. I’m saying that they could not have another person that could add to their company in the same way you could – with your unique perspective and background and identity and creativity. (Because I don’t care who you are, EVERYONE can be creative. And if you think you aren’t, then you are just either boxing in what you think ‘creative’ means, or being lazy.) Your ‘replacement’ could even be someone very good, but they could not replace you in the company. And that makes you ESSENTIAL to the company’s identity.
If you are a waiter, and you realize that its better to have all the wait-staff learn how to use the dishwasher incase the dishwashing worker goes to the bathroom and slows down the line, that’s creativity. If you work at a mill and realize that it’d be faster to work in relay than to carry materials back and forth, that is inputing your identity and creativity into your work.
What are some of your qualitites that make you indispensible? I think one of my best qualities is that I crave pushing the envelope, even when its easy to think realistically. (I try to never be ‘realistic’, coming from a too-much-feasibility, engineering background.) Tell me about some of your awesome traits and creativity in the workplace. :)