Archive for December, 2013

Why Every Firm Needs A Frosty, A Rudolph, And Even A Grinch.


Here it is, Christmastime again and all of our favorite Christmas specials are on television. Frosty is back with his cane and his cute carrot of a nose, the Grinch and his poor overburdened little dog, Max, have returned, and of course, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer is anxiously glowing in anticipation of his big night. We know them, we love them, but why do we need to work with them?

The Frosty FactorFrosty the Snowman

Frosty the Snowman is probably the most positive and enthusiastic character you’ll ever meet. He sings and laughs and plays with the kids knowing that his life is only as long as the current cold snap. Some might think that he is delusional, a real Polly Anna, and instead of enjoying his time in the animated world he should be either depressed or scurrying around trying to find a way to beat the system. But that is not what Frosty is about.

The importance of positive energy and hopeful goodwill to the health and vitality of a group cannot be overstated. Anyone who has ever sat in a meeting with a Negative Nelly who grimaces their way through the list of 100 reasons why whatever has just been presented will never work, can thoroughly appreciate the presence of an enthusiastic Frosty. That’s not to say that you want a coworker who is so focused on the positive that they seem like they are having a different conversation from everyone else. Instead having a colleague that is clearheaded and who wholeheartedly supports the consensus makes it more enjoyable for everyone as they work towards a common goal. Frosty is a true team player.

Rudolph the Rednosed ReindeerRudolph Leads the Way

When thinking about having a Rudolph type in the office, it would be easy to be led astray by Rudolph’s shy and insecure personality. You might think of his unpopularity with the other reindeer and remember that rather than stand up for himself, he chose to run away. That would only be until you realized that those less than stellar traits belong to the immature Rudy, not the fully realized one.

Being a leader is tough. It takes fortitude and a sincere belief in yourself and in your team to do it well. It also takes a willingness to forgive. These are the standout traits that Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer who leads Santa’s sleigh every year embodies. Once he realized that his differentness translated to awesomeness, he was able to step into the leadership role and never look back. And the cherry on top? All of the other reindeer from Dasher to Blitzen came to recognize his value to the team and thereafter embraced his leadership.

The Grinch, Whovillians & the Office

Okay, I admit it; this is where this article gets a little schmaltzy. Remember that Negative Nelly type we talked about in the Frosty segment? Well, here she is. As unbelievable as it sounds, we actually need a grumble pants on the team. The negativity they exude isn’t all just noise.The_grinch&Max Every so often, there is a real reason for the ‘It’s not going to work.” statement and they’re right, it won’t work. After some discussion, the team recognizes that ‘it’ needs some tweaking before it is the solution they’re looking for. Once a consensus is achieved, Frosty can step up and do what Frosty does best.  Without the initial poo-pooing voiced by the Grinch-type coworker, the final product would not be the work of art that it became.

The Grinch, Whovillians & the Office Part Two

There are a lot of messages in “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” but for staffing needs, the messages are thus. Everyone has personality traits that are not great and everyone deserves forgiveness. The Grinch believed that by removing the trappings of Christmas, the Whovillians would stop all their happy Christmas foolishness and just go back to bothering him in a general way. He was the Difficult to Get Along With Guy that sometimes turns up in the workplace.

Forget, if you will, the grumbley, grouchy, animal abusing Grinch of the early story and concentrate on who he is the end of the story.

But, after the Whos shrugged off their initial shock at his dastardly deed, they went ahead with their celebration and even found it in their hearts to welcome him into their community. He was a changed Grinch. Through their kindness, the Whos helped him become the Helpful Hank he really was.  Pretty amazing, yeah?

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