Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Seattle's Pike Place Market is a Mantra Must

In spring 2001 I remember hearing about Fish in my Operations Management class. It had some interesting and relatable concepts around transforming what should be repetitive low energy work into a top performing team... oh and using the fisherman from Seattle's Pike Place Market was a great visual.

MTV filmed The Real World Seattle a few years prior with many shots of fishmongers chanting to each other throwing fish in the air. Not since Tom Cruise had liquor bottles flying through the air in the movie Cocktail had I seen anything like that.

I've recommended this book to dozens of people over the years. It's a quick read and admittedly it was sitting on my to read list for a longer than I'd like. I remember purchasing it at the Virgin Megastore in Orlando. Made for a great poolside read while interning at Disney, especially since Disney organically has several of the book's concept's present with how cast members interact with each other and with guests.

The book was written in 2000, before Millennials entered the workplace in volume. Much of the book's content is evergreen and a precursor towards much of the office culture and productivity content often written about today.

Fish! A Proven Way to Boost Morale and Improve Results Review: Here's another management parable that draws its lesson from an unlikely source--this time it's the fun-loving fishmongers at Seattle's Pike Place Market. In Fish! the heroine, Mary Jane Ramirez, recently widowed and mother of two, is asked to engineer a turnaround of her company's troubled operations department, a group that authors Stephen Lundin, Harry Paul, and John Christensen describe as a "toxic energy dump." Most reasonable heads would cut their losses and move on. Why bother with this bunch of losers? But the authors don't make it so easy for Mary Jane. Instead, she's left to sort out this mess with the help of head fishmonger Lonnie. Based on a bestselling corporate education video, Fish! aims to help employees find their way to a fun and happy workplace. While some may find the story line and prescriptions--such as "Choose Your Attitude," "Make Their Day," and "Be Present"--downright corny, others will find a good dose of worthwhile motivational management techniques.

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