At Triton, whenever I was involved in the interview process, I would generally tell the candidate several things. I told them that our job was to try to find the best people we could find and then try to provide a work environment that made them want to stay with the company. I told them that life was too short to work in a job that you don’t enjoy. I told them that we sincerely wanted them to want to be working at Triton more than any other company and if at any time they felt otherwise, they should leave. Our job was to keep them happy and challenged.
I would tell them that I sincerely wished that we had all the answers, but we didn’t and if they had an idea, they should speak up. I personally told them that if we were in a meeting, and they thought one of my ideas was the stupidest thing they had ever heard – that they should say so. Though I confess I wasn’t completely sincere about that part, several did indeed “say so.”
Each year, even when profits were slim and cash was in short supply, we would try to have a crawfish or shrimp boil and generally a Christmas party. One year we encouraged everyone to dress up for Halloween and set aside some money for prizes for the best costume. The employees were then to vote on the best costume. I wore a stupid pirate costume and my partners and I thought it would be funny if we rigged the prize awards such that we won all the prizes. Of course, after I did a few celebratory dances like the NFL players do in the end zone after a touchdown, we awarded the prizes to those who deserved them—and I was not among the real winners.
Overall…We tried to make work fun.
Disclaimer: Frank Wilem is an author, speaker, and all around funny and entertaining guy. On this blog, his stories are based on his real life experiences, often with a satirical twist.
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