Fish (Stephen C. Lundin)
Fish by Stephen C. Lundin, Harry Paul & John Christensen is an inspiring parable, quite relevant to the modern times. People, too engrossed in their daily routine, just work with the flow, just because they have to. They need to truly connect to there work and should not make it a mundane ritual. People don't realize that the same work, if done with wholeheartedness and positive energy and attitude, will improve their productivity. By applying the simple things as mentioned in the book, the working environment can be made teeming with palpable energy, zeal, and passion, thereby extracting the best from the employees.
In this engrossing page-turner, a manager is appointed as a leader of a new team which is referred to as the "toxic energy dump" by all the other departments of the building, because of the palpable lack of energy on that floor. She takes the charge upon herself to convert her team into an enthusiastic, proactive and effective team. Armed with the simple lessons from a fish-monger in the neighborhood Pike's Fish Place, which is world-famous for its joyful atmosphere and customer service, she manages to bring about an amazing transformation in her team. Written in a lucid language which appeals to everybody, the book manages to convey its message very effectively. The "Fish" wisdom is simple, yet profound, and is instantly applicable to any organization.
The "Fish" philosophy enlists four basic principles as a way to re-energize any organization, and to create a 'World Famous' experience for the customers. These principles are the following:
- "Choose your attitude" - It's us who decide whether to have a joyful day or a grumpy day at the workplace. It's our attitude which decides whether we make our work-hours a fulfilling and psychologically enriching time, or a banal ritual, which we unwillingly have to do whether we like it or not. Quoting a line from the book, "Life is too precious just to be passing through to retirement". So choose to have a positive enthusiastic and passionate attitude towards work, and see benefits for yourself.
- "Play" - It might sound amusing and childish to people to suggest the application of this principle to the austere corporate environment. However, for contentment, it is essential to play, to add more energy and zing to our everyday lives, as the play is directly proportional to how much we enjoy ourselves, how much we enjoy our work.
- "Make their day" - where 'their' refers to our customers. We should engage customers and welcome them cordially. Involving others and working to "make their day" directs attention towards the customer. Focusing our attention on ways to make the other person's day provides a constant flow of energy, and makes the otherwise dull work a joyful experience. Thus, we can give them reasons to smile and experiences which they will love to reminisce and cherish for long time afterward.
- "Be present" - We should be fully present for our work, giving it complete undivided attention. We should be present for each other and for our customers. Even if we are done with the work assigned directly to us, we should seek out opportunities to get more involved in the work. For example, there is always a customer waiting to get his grievances attended to. We can help if, if not directly, then by directing him to those who can help.
Finally, quoting the most motivating lines from the book:
"There is something I know about you that you may not even know about yourself. You have within you more resources of energy than have ever been tapped, more talent than has ever being exploited, more strength than has ever been tested, and more to give than you have ever given."
So, go ahead, and FISH! Happy Fishing folks....!