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Fish!

We were in line at Half-Priced Books and I couldn’t find the generically titled “Fish” on my phone at the library. We’ll call it an impulse buy. Only two dollars and it was Wall Street Journal Business Bestseller. A one-day read, Fish! was a cheesy but interesting read – worth the two dollars for a corporate mixture of mindfulness and customer service.

The book is a “parable” that demonstrates the authors’ training philosophy based on the Pike Place Fish Market. The fictional story is cheesy, but the format made the book quite digestible. It recounts the four principles behind the success of the “world famous” Seattle fish market.

  1. Choose Your Attitude
  2. Play
  3. Make Their Day
  4. Be Present

Mindfulness is all about being present and choosing how you act when faced with life, not simply reacting is a core skill. The authors use similar language in applying the idea of Choosing Your Attitude:

There is always a choice about the way you do your work, even if there is not a choice about the work itself (37)

I hadn’t directly considered the importance of the “Play” and “Make Their Day” principles before, but I have a predisposition to Dad Jokes so I’ve inadvertently utilized these ideas at work. My favorite was asking kids checking out a BB-8 robot if they would use it to help the Resistance or the First Order. It occasionally went over the kids head, but would produce a sly smile if they got it.

They engage people and welcome them to join in the fun. Customers like being a part of the show, and memories are created here which will bring smiles and make good stories for a long time afterward. Involving others and working to “make their day” directs attention toward the customer (66).

Fish! was an easy read, and a good reminder of both mindfulness and customer service principles. Best of all, it gives me free reign to use more Dad Jokes at work.

Fish: A Proven Way to Boost Morale and Improve Results


Next time: Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days

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Published in Brian Reads Business Monday Review

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