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Interesting Means to increase ROI

Donkey, Domestic Donkey

Why should you employ someone with a sense of humor?

Well, allow me to tell you a story.

His last job was working at an Auction House and he claimed he had been able to raise the company’s revenue by over 5000% in one-year. I started by leaving him an”out” and asked him if that was a typo – and when he meant to say 5%, 50% or was it 500%. He acted appalled that I did not believe the 5000% gains in earnings figure. He told me;

“It was 5000% and may even have been higher!”

At this time I needed to listen to his secret. He said;

“It was simple, during each auctioning session, he’d sneak up in the rafters and scatter’itching powder’ very lightly on the crowd below. Those bidding couldn’t help themselves and maintained itching their hair, head and shoulders. – and each time they did that bumped up the price because those were seen as gestures to bid higher.”

Well, that is a creative solution really, but was it real? And, how did he measure this? He explained the numbers and increases and yes, it was somewhere close to 5000%. A 4960% increase in reality when I did the math. I never found out if he actually did that or not, but he was the most fascinating person I had ever interviewed and that I was hiring for a position in the R&D section, the name being Director of Innovation, in charge of all the innovation team leaders.

He delivered his statement with such a straight face, that I wonder if it was true. If he made it up, that’s just hilarious and should be a cartoon in Barron’s or the Wall Street Journal. If it’s real -“Wow, that is quite a business story.”

It’s great to have fun people in your organization’s innovation center – with interesting people who think outside the box is also an excellent thing. Occasionally as human resource professionals we take ourselves too seriously. We don’t treat people like people. We fail to see the human side, and how certain personality traits could be a lot more important than foundation knowledge, University degrees, or years in an industry.

Unique people are valuable to a company – but if you disagree, well, perhaps you should just hire a bunch of robots and call it Robotic Resources instead of Human Resources. Oh and while you are at it, why don’t you save your company some money and hire a robot to replace you too? Who wants a dull and boring human in human resources – we have enough of these already. That is probably why we have the problems in this sector that we do now! Think on this individual.

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