Friday, May 30, 2014

An Exclusive interview with a Fun Sheriff

Note: This article was just published on Linked in last night, if you like it, please go here and share it, so we can form a Fun-guild.

I have a new job title!
In addition to being a Scrum master and an Agile coach, I am now officially the Fun Sheriff of our company.
AFAIK I am the only-est Fun Sheriff in the world, so as a bonus I attach an exclusive interview...

Q: Hey cowboy, what is this Fun Sheriff role anyways?
A: A Fun Sheriff is a variation on the role of a CHO (Chief Happiness Officer), which I found more effective for my purposes.
Q: CHO? What is a CHO??
A: just look it up (they say Google is your friend)
Q: OK, I just read about it, sounds interesting (though perhaps not relevant to our company). So what are the differences between a Fun Sheriff and a CHO?
A: Glad you asked, the two main differences are:
- Sheriff vs. Chief: A CHO is a managerial position, part of the company's hierarchical structure, while a sheriff is part outlaw, on the border or off-grid, and roams in the gray zone where fun-law is not well established to help enforce the fun-justice.
- Fun vs. Happiness: A CHO is happiness-centered, while a FS is fun-centered, since happiness has to do more with individual's internal state, while fun is more in the public domain of a group of people and is about human interaction.
Q: Hmmm... any other differences?
A: Sure, ma'am. A CHO (being a chief) is a central authority, while a Sheriff is constantly looking to recruit deputies to apply local fun, also - a CHO drives a corporate-car while a FS rides a horse.
Q: You are kidding me, right?
A: No ma'am, but if I do it's only 'cause I'm doin' my job...
Q: How do you personally do it in addition to being a Scrum-master and an Agile coach?
A: It actually helps.
Q: OK, whatever. I just used the web as you advised and found out something interesting, are you aware of the fact a 'Fun Sheriff' is the term some cultures give to a party-buster?
A: Yes ma'am, it came to my attention, but unfortunately only after I printed my biz-cards, . Here, have one...
Q: Thanks! that's really funny! You know, though it sounds kind'a crazy it's kind'a interesting as well, how can I ask you some more questions if I am intrigued?
A: Just whistle, you know how to whistle, donc'ha? or drop me a note.
Q: Thanks a lot! see you around!
A: Good day, ma'am...

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

The economy of s-miles

as promised: a second post-Agile-France post...

Last week I had a crash course in economy!

For years the subject of economy passed me by,
but last Wednesday it hit me in the face! 

I was in Agile-France, where we were given 10 bill-size sheets of paper like this - 

That you give to anyone who said or did something you liked.

What a great and simple idea, isn't it !???

I mean, stop and think about it for a moment...

No, no, I mean - please stop NOW! and think about it for a moment...

OK, I'll do it differently...

* If I had the time I'd build and put a web timer-gadget here that will let you continue just after a pause...

I mean - It's not just a note you give to people who animated a session you like, but to anyone you want to give it to.

... And they can give it back to anyone else...
- My first urge was to ask for more, since I knew I am going to run out instantly (but I didn't ask, since I opted in...)
- My second urge was to keep it, so it will be well spent - only on people who REALLY deserve it. ain't that funny??
- Third: how do you get the economy rolling?? if everyone will act cheep that no one will act generously, so how do I win some so I can become more generous and distribute some?? and make others more generous as well?

- How would people behave if they would receive just one to begin with?
- How would they behave if they received a hundred?
- How would they feel in each case when they receive one from someone? (what's the value of a smile for them?)

Than I signed all my bills on the back...

I wanted to see if a bill I held ever gets back to me (and after how much time, and how many hands, etc.), and I wanted people to feel they are getting used-bills.
I started handing people the s-miles and explaining why I signed, so to spread the message that they are for re-distribution, etc.

One of the people I talked to said he keeps them and tries to get as much as possible, since he suspects you'll be able to buy a prize with them at the end of the conf.
So in return I imagined a conf. where if you leave with more s-miles that you received at the beginning - you have to clean the rooms before they let you leave.

Some people personalized them

Some drew continuous chain drawings on the back

Imagine we could trace the s-mile economy...
- Do people from Paris vs from Rennes behave as a closed team? 
- Are they given more outdoors or indoors?
- Are there hubs - people who give a lot and receive a lot, and get the economy moving?
Another thought - how about a parallel currency like this:
What would it encourage?
See, we are so used to money that we think in price (when you get a gift, you automatically estimate how expensive it is, donc'ha?)

So when I got back to work, I proposed one of my teams a small game - to have Ullink S-Miles in the team.
(BTW - S-Mile is my lame translation of Sou-rire, 'Sou' being Money, 'Sourire' being smile...)

The first question the team asked is:
- So what if someone forges a s-mile
Hence I became the s-mile bank! I stamp them so they can't be forged (but this doesn't prevent me from forging some myself ;)

The second question - are we allowed to give some to other teams?
- So I made two kinds - some to circulate in the team (so money won't be diluted), and some that can be used externally...

So now I suddenly understand: inflation, deflation, exchange rates, forgery's effect on economy, how economy holds itself, the stock-exchange, how optimism effects economy effects optimism, etc.

Credit: where it is due