By Manon Hede
At the beginning of the year, I bought a whole bunch of books that Marc asked us to read.
Last week I read this one: Digital advertising: PAST, PRESENT, AND FUTURE.
I started reading it at the beginning of the week, every morning, in the subway, if a seat is available. I don’t read standing up, or I’ll fall.
I bought this second-hand book in August.
Three months later, the Bakerloo line takes 20 minutes break between Kensal Green and Queen’s Park. I’m finally opening it. I find inside full of papers belonging to a certain Alex Barclay.
Notes, a promotion of 250 pounds for a good work done in August 2011 by the JPMH company in which he worked.
A mark from Mark Warner, a holiday agency, where Alex evaluated his level in different sports with his instructor Luke Grantham. I can tell you he’s good at volleyball.
Otherwise, he left a lot of little notes, and on one of them he wrote :
« Things that people want:
I thought it might be an interesting theme for a scab.
Like, life is not like in House of Cards and it’s a bit of a superficial reflection, and the best thing is love, joy, and peace. Bullshits.
I asked my friends: « What do you want the most in the world? Is that money, sex, security, and power? »
Answers 1: « Yeah it’s everyone’s goal in life.”
Answers 2: « Dah, obviously. »
Then I asked myself the question and I thought: « Oh, maybe it is. »
I gave up the idea of this scab.
Then I stalked Alex.
On entering his name and address I found all his life, born in 1965, director of a consulting firm, English, training, profile photo, blah blah blah…
End of the story. Boring.
Otherwise, having read this book, I can tell you about an interesting chapter:
« When Sweden Rules the World. »
Patrick Gardner explains that the Swedes are far more advanced than the rest of the world at any level.
“Platonic unisex saunas. Eccentric, blob-shaped cars. A wrist-slashingly morose national cinema, which nevertheless claims a cozy role as film theory’s eternal darling. The mysterious Swedish bikini team.»
He paints the picture of a beautiful country, a bit like a utopia. Even if he ends up saying that Sweden never rules the world, but many aspects of the Swedish mentality do rule. And if you choose to, you can also make them part of your world today.
Here are the tops ten tips to make your world a little more Swedish by Patrick:
1. Work hard every day you work, be modest, and don’t look for shortcuts
2. Prioritize your private life, and refuse to compromise it away for work. If you need to, trade a higher salary for more time off.
3. Tell uncomfortable truths, and skip the jargon
4. Always innovative. If it has been done before, do it differently or don’t do it at all
5. Collaborate, and give credit where credits are due
6. If you’ve got that sweet corner office, turn it into your team’s project room and move your desk back out onto the floor
7. Keep structures and titles as flat as possible. You may need your title on occasion, but don’t take it too seriously or use it as a wall.
8. Promote the doctrine that everyone contributes ideas
9. Kill your darlings for the good of the project.
10. Cultivate a culture of responsibility with freedom. Let people know that they’re allowed to fail, and don’t punish honest failure.
Anyway, Sweden killing it.
Maybe I should have done a scab on Sweden.
If you have this book in your possession read it.