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DARE TO WIN
A long afternoon sitting in a too-small conference room with the entire new marketing organization, going through slide after slide of who we are and how we work together in the new flow chart of people and placement. After each section of the presentations, the 50+ people there took turns giving a 1-minute recitation on what their goals/methods/attitudes were doing to contribute to the overall growth of the company.

Thinking outside the box

Asking for forgiveness rather than permission

Behaving professionally

Seeking a good balance

Finding solutions in various areas

Working as a team

Being better at what we do

In other words, "I pledge to do my job to the best of my abilities and then some, blah blah blah" with various twists on a theme. Here's what I said, in so many words:

"My contribution to the overall growth of the company is to continue. ...Continue to get up each morning and look forward to work. Continue to bring a smile and present a cheerful, positive attitude to my colleagues and the sales offices. Continue to provide creative and quick delivery without losing sight of quality. Continue to ensure that everyone at my company and our customers know what materials and services we offer. Continue to keep track that our corporate graphical identity is being consistently updated and enforced."

Except that I said it in Swedish, and stuttered on the first sentence so that it came out as "continue to come to work" which made everyone howl with laughter, but hey you know what? That IS something we must all do to contribute to the overall growth of the company. Eller hur?

Anyway, after everything was gone over and gone through and all the PowerPoint slides had slid their way to the finish, the head of the organization thanked us all for coming and held up a little bag of candy (Haribo gummy fruit pacifiers) and said that it would go to the person that had the best 1-minute presentation.

"Who had the best presentation?" he asked.

We all just sat there and stared at him, some shifting in their seats, some giggling nervously.

He asked again, and held up the bag. Everyone sort of looked around, all those well-behaved Jantelagen-indoctrinated Swedes, but no one said anything.

So I shot up my hand and said, "It was me!" Everyone laughed, and he laughed too, and then asked them, "Well, okay, was Liz's the best one?" Everyone laughed again and some said yes and some started clapping, and he asked a third time if I was the best and finally the room chorused "YES!" and he threw me the bag of candy. Score!

Then I ripped it open and passed it around the room. Because I'm a team player like that.
 cheerful
mood: cheerful
music: Eva Cassidy—At Last
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Comments

Hahaha! That was great!

Hey, this is totally random.

Is it true that there is a bridge that connects Sweden and Denmark, but that part of the bridge is actually a tunnel under the water to allow boats to pass?

If it's true (and my co-worker's picture wasn't just fancy Photoshop work), that seems remarkably dangerous... what if the water swells up over the sides?

Right after I posted that, I thought -- shouldn't I just look online? So I found it.

Turns out the photograph is real, but it's actually in Virginia. It's called the MMMBT. A similar bridge/tunnel does exist between Sweden and Denmark though.

Bizarre.

Yes, there is. I've been across it many times. The tunnel starts on a man-made island in the middle of the Öresund Strait. So, from Sweden you take a high bridge (high enough for all the boats to go under) across to the island (named Pepperholm, to accompany a natural island nearby already called Saltholm) and from thence a tunnel under the water (deep enough for all the boats to go over) the rest of the way to Denmark.

I assume they've thought of that, even though the entrance is well up on an island, but I suppose in this day and age of global warming and rising oceans it's bound to be of more concern in the next 50 years.

Woot!

(Anonymous)

Obviously you DID have the best presentation - because you're sooo god you only have to continue! Americans learn early that you have to toot your own horn! Love, Lizardmom

(Anonymous)

One of these days I WILL learn to spellcheck BEFORE I hit the post comment button - - it was supposed to be "good" - so don't let that swelled head get even bigger on my account! HAHAHA! Lizardmom

also, what do you mean "that swelled head" ?? What exactly are you implying, MOM?

(Anonymous)

Oh- I was just probably in the heads of those Swedish team players- who were likely thinking "What a typical American"! :) or :0 - actually they were probably all very relieved that someone had the guts to speak up!

I will tell my boss that I'm so god. Maybe THAT will get me a pay raise! :D

wow,haha, how American of you!
I ned to blow my own horn a little more, I fear I'm hopelessly Swedish too, in that sense, and it's showing over here in the US.
(also, I MISS the gummy pacifiers..)

Wish I'd known, I could have sent them to you. I don't even LIKE that kind of candy!

(Anonymous)

Girl - you rock!

bohemiangirl

You rock!

The Dutch are indoctrinated with Jantelagen as well. I'm glad after all these years you're still very much a "happy to be me" American.

It was just so funny, how no one said anything. All the little presentations were the same, so no one stood out in that sense. :)

I have no idea what your presentation was like, but I'm sure you're very charismatic (and of course a team player). No doubt it's easy to "rally the troops". :-) That and you give them candy. You're in like slim.

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