Capitalize on Your Weird

“Capitalize on Your Weird” feels like an odd concept, but in reality, this is what makes history. For example, think back on Great Leaders like Pope Francis,

Notable Leaders with Weird Traits that Made them Great

  1. Pope Francis, the Pope of the People was a Nightclub Bouncer which he feels helped him connect to people who attended and softened his heart where other hearts have been hardened.  He became a great leader because he understood everyday people.
  2. Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, believes in only organizing meetings that are small and intimate. They should only involve the key players and decision makers. So,, he has a ‘Two Pizza’ rule. If the number of attendees can’t be fed by two pizzas, then the group is too large.
  3. Sara Blakeley, CEO of Spanx, believes that car commutes are where the best ideas originate. She feels that this time is meant for clarity of thought. So, even though she only lives a mile or so from the office, she drives around her work for an hour before finally pulling in.
  4. Michael Kors is an American Fashion Designer of the brand that holds his name. A fashion company worth $20 billion. Kors, however, does not wear his fashion. Instead he comes to work in a black crewneck each and every day. He says this allows him to focus on other decisions rather than wasting time curating his own outfit.

Notable Companies with Weird Traditions or Policies that make them Great

  1. Pixar creates a work culture by allowing creativity to be the forefront, including in the construction of its “cubicles,” which are often shaped like huts and are tricked out to the nines.
  2. Amazon’s “returnless refunds” which allows sellers to offer refunds without actually getting the item back from the buyer. And their Automatic Authorization policy for returns has made them a powerhouse in the retail industry and beyond. It’s not just about inside culture, but your outside culture too.
  3. Costco adopted their four Operational Choices: Offer less, standardize and empower, cross-train, and operate with slack. These were pretty weird when they were first introduced. Now, they are want the company is founded on. And Costco execs say, “Culture isn’t the most important thing — it’s the only thing.”
  4. Spotify has created a culture of guilds and tribes and squads that serve not only as a fun little group building exercise, but also as an accountability process. Team Building doesn’t have to be tedious it can be fun.

How can you Capitalize on your Weird to make your Company Great?

Well, first things first, you have to embrace it. Take whatever makes you stand out and run with it. The ‘old world’ hated when things stood out, but today? The whole world thrives on ‘weird’. People are rooting for the odd and unexplainable. They want to back and be a part of the out of the box ideas. Don’t let the world stop you…

Be weird in a brighter tomorrow!



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