Fish! A Remarkable Way to Boost Morale and Improve Results Hardcover – 6 Sep 2001
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Here's another management parable that draws its lesson from an unlikely source--this time it's the fun-loving fishmongers at Seattle's Pike Place Market. In Fish! the heroine, Mary Jane Ramirez, recently widowed and mother of two, is asked to engineer a turnaround of her company's troubled operations department, a group that authors Stephen Lundin, Harry Paul and John Christensen describe as a "toxic energy dump". Most reasonable heads would cut their losses and move on. Why bother with this bunch of losers? But the authors don't make it so easy for Mary Jane. Instead, she's left to sort out this mess with the help of head fishmonger Lonnie. Based on a bestselling corporate education video, Fish! aims to help employees find their way to a fun and happy workplace. While some may find the storyline and prescriptions--such as "Choose Your Attitude", "Make Their Day" and "Be Present"--downright corny, others will find a good dose of worthwhile motivational management techniques. If you loved Who Moved My Cheese? then you'll find much to like here. And don't worry about Mary Jane and kids. Fish! has a happy ending for everyone. --Harry C Edwards --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
This is one fish story that doesn't exaggerate. It shows you how changing your attitude lets you enjoy your work and your life. Hook into it, it's quite a catch! (Spencer Johnson, author of Who Moved My Cheese?)
I recommend their book to anyone, on any level, who wants to make a difference at work. (Hyrum Smith, co-chairman Franklin Covey Co.)
The story of the world famous Pike Place Fish market is fantastic. But this book is not just about selling fish; it's a love story that can happen in your organisation too. (Ken Blanchard, from the Foreword)
Top customer reviews
Since then I have read the book and watched the film countless times, and each time it helps to put everything back in perspective - not just in a business sense, but also in general life.
Unlike many other business management books, the four principles of Be Present, Make Their Day, Play and Choose Your Attitude are wonderfully simple to remember - and more importantly, are even more simple to implement within your business.
AND do they make a difference? YES.
We used FISH! as a vehicle to communicate our culture to everyone in our company, when we re-branded the business in 2005. Since then, we have drawn on the philosophy and the messages time and time again. To top it all, every person who joins our company is given a copy of book to help explain "why we do things the way we do."
Also, we are a UK company - I know lots of people feel that these principles can only work in the USA. Well, I disagree.
It has helped to make our company different, stand out from the competition, enable the staff to enjoy their work more and help us thrive in an economic climate that has sent many other companies out of business.
It is a story about a manager in a department that is struggling with low energy, low morale and a poor reputation. One lunchtime she watches some fishmongers do something extraordinary - have fun, create amazing energy and enthusiasm and inspire others (they have spectators!).
The fishmongers distil their magic into four principles:
(i) Play - a light-hearted attitude and having fun in the workplace can make work an enjoyable experience (shock, horror for those who think work is a four letter word).
(ii) Make Someone's Day - creating a Wow! factor for your customers, going that little bit further than your competitors: it makes you memorable and keeps them coming back
(iii) Choose your Attitude - if you are at work 40hours+ a week, why not have fun, be positive and enjoy it?
(iv) Be Present - when someone is talking to you, don't email, think of other things, really concentrate on them, make a connection - people notice and it counts.
Are these the answers to your morale, high sickness or high turnover problems? Possibly. For one hour and a few quid's investment, isn't it worth finding out?
What I loved was the additional information in the follow-up book (Fish Tales) that show real people and real businesses (from nurses, to call centres, to car salesmen and roofers) using the FISH! principles and creating wonderful places to work (for them and their customers). Maybe a year on you'll want to get Fish Sticks to learn how to keep the momentum going once the initial buzz has worn off.
What I learnt was if they can, I can use this to bring new life and energy into my business and those I work with. Great stuff: inspiring, yet simple.
Alternatively, if you have a friend who is always moaning about how dull their work is, do them a favour and buy them this instead of another glass of wine. It might just make their day.
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