We generally suck at these three things, which explains our company culture

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(photos: Placing us at the scene of the crime…third row, dead center… ha, ha, ha)

It all comes down to leadership, culture and time doesn’t it? A great culture doesn’t suck as much as a poor culture because the leaders are better at using their time to intentionally drive the internal service culture (the employee experience).

Two nights ago at the Walt Disney World Service Awards, we randomly sat in the third row, dead center for a special, one-of-a-kind (and one night only) return of the comedy warehouse.

The comedian took a moment to poll the audience and have them clap when their years of service were announced. We were the only two who clapped at 30, and were also the last two to clap – the senior people in the audience. Who knew? What happened next was the question, “What was the worst thing that ever happened to you at Disney?”

Here’s the freaky thing. A brain freeze. Nothing compelling was ever remembered as a ‘nightmare’, so the answer was supposed to be fun (yet true), “Leaving each day.”

They needed something juicier, so they pressed… and got to this, “Closing New Year’s Eve and opening New Year’s Day.” At Disney’s Grand Floridian.

The six performers sang a little ditty tying the two together and closed out the show.

In retrospect a key insight was revealed: a positive mental attitude can cure many things, like the daily frustrations challenges of working in a demanding, high-pressure, high expectation, expensive, can’t-say-no-to-the-Guests environment.

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Joy of Doing Without

It is a mid life goal to learn how to live simply, so that others may simply live.

This is one of the toughest life lessons to reverse.  Everything we see or hear in the media, tells us more is better.

I’m teaching our son that less is more, not more is better.

Assets become liabilities.  Seriously.

You get a nice car and then you worry about it being damaged or stolen.  We live where most people drive upscale vehicles.

I drive a 20-year old car and love that it starts every time the key turns. Over a year ago, it was damaged when I was a victim of road rage.  I’m thankful to be alive.

Never fixed that front fender, a daily reminder of what’s important.

The joy of doing without is something I need help on everyday anyway.

Einstein Average Man

“If I would be a young man again and had to decide how to make a living, I would not try to become a scientist or scholar or teacher.  I would rather choose to be a plumber or a peddler in the hope to find that modest degree of independence still available under present circumstances”. Albert Einstein

Meanwhile in my zip code, there’s a sea of upscale vehicles, yet the 1990 Toyota suites me perfectly.

There’s even a dinner-plate sized dent on the driver’s front fender.  Was going to have it repaired until I realized how much that road-rage induced dent signified how lucky I am to still be alive.

In America, we are constantly tempted to keep up with the Joneses.  Why?   Because we are afraid of who we really are.

Would you rather be loved for who you’re not or hated for who you are?

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