Business can be simplified, over-simplified, made too complicated, or sometimes made just too plain dreary to even look at!
Personally, I like a table that looks good! Of course, there have been times, many times, that paper has had to suffice for cloth, but, in all reality, raising the bar does just that, it raises the bar.
What is this all about? I was thinking about the napkins we set our table with on Sundays, special occasions, holidays…We have many children and grandchildren but, of course, it did not start that way! In the beginning, everything matched. Pale blue linen dinner napkins, pretty pinks, and beautiful ivories graced our table. Then something happened. Everyone started developing personalities that came out with the napkins! Our daughters received the pretty pink, sons the blue, Mom the ivory, Dad the plaid, all nestled in wine goblets. Change happened again as it does in lively households… Fancy ways of displaying the napkins developed, daughters wanting something other than pink, Great Grandma’s napkins with the fancy silver metallic threads woven through were brought out, Dad bought some new colors, neighbors made us some crafty ones …and I discovered that all this difference was good. I taught my children how to set the table and I was always delighted at the outcome! Their clever ways of making a table beautiful were way beyond me!
What does this have to do with business? Everything! If we live in a business world where everything needs to be the same, we will miss the beauty of difference. Yes, the basics remain the same, but aside from that, let the creativity of people explode!
If someone was given a napkin that was too small, give them a larger one, one with more responsibility. Are the metallic shiny threaded ones a bit too harsh, even though they are lovely to look at? Skills on softening up, truly listening to people, hearing and feeling their needs will help. Maybe Dad doesn’t want a plaid, perhaps something a bit less noisy. Business does not have to be the clanging gong! Easy going does it very well! Mom does love the linens, but also likes a fun one here and there! Fun! Fun is so necessary for business! Perhaps get together and work sometime. Have fun! Are your colors bold and proud, pale and wanting corners, lively, looking to be involved. Use me? We are a global community! Does your table have an international feel?
We all need to take note of words, whether they come from humble, whimsical blogs or from very distinguished papers, words that will teach us a little more about ourselves. So, let’s see, what kind of dinner napkin are you? Am I? Serviceable, but only serviceable? Pleasing to look at, but that is all? A paper one that will disappear in water? One that with stains feels it is now no longer any good? What colors, what textures? OY! Sometimes a pot holder is needed! …