Why do we take ourselves so seriously?

I love this TED video from Tim Brown at IDEO. I seriously have a business crush on the man.

After Tim asks his audience to sketch their neighbor in thirty seconds (geez, I wish I had thought of that one) he realizes that upon revealing their neighbor’s pictures in this group of adults there’s a lot of “I’m sorry” going around the room.

He goes on to say that we fear the judgment of our peers. We’re embarrassed to show our ideas to our peers and this is what makes us conservative.

Don’t you love that?

He quotes his partner and one of the founders of IDEO, David Kelly, as saying “I set out to start a company of best friends. Friendship is a short cut to play. It allows us to trust.”

Trust is good for a company’s soul.

I have been thinking about that lately. Brains on Fire is a company of best friends. We love together, fight together and play together.

But more importantly we trust each other.

And we are lucky to work with clients who get this. I can often feel in the very first phone introduction if a company feels relaxed with each other.

Spike and I had a call the other day and when we entered the call the tone was set as we listened to this group joke about the wii fit someone had just gotten for the holidays. They laughed when we realized they didn’t even notice we had joined the call. But no one apologized. We all just laughed. It was a nice way to start a relationship. At play. Trusting each other. No one taking themselves too seriously.

What can you do today to help break our adult habits?


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