Let’s first address the featured image linked to this post because I can already hear women saying that it’s sexist and irrelevant for this post. Well, they’re absolutely right but that’s called “Thinking outside the box“, unconventional, different and from a new perspective. In this case the perspective is that my mainly male audience definitely prefers looking at a pretty blond girl instead of a box. Besides that, Sangat Pedas should be a little more Sangat Pedas in my opinion. So gents, here’s a link to the wallpaper size image, enjoy!
Anyway, the topic is “Thinking outside the Box” and why we really should stop using those words.
So, do you recognize this? You’ve just had a 30 minute talk with your investor, manager or some creative arty farty consultant and when you walk out of the room you’re thinking “What the hell was he talking about?” Basically all you remember is “Bla bla bla bla bla uuuuhhh outside the box” followed by more “Bla bla bla bla, let’s just think outside the box, really!”. It’s managers talk and the analysis of this talk is most of the times spot on because basically nothing was said, no content but using the cliche “Think outside the Box”.
For me it’s like saying “Bla bla bla don’t stop breathing or you will die” or “Bla bla bla don’t forget to wipe your ass after going to the toilet because else it will get messy and smelly”. Now don’t get me wrong because I understand why managers use this language. First it’s a great way to hide you have no idea what the hell you’re talking about but you’ve got to say something so why not reverse the roles by leaving the people on the other side of the table guessing. Second, and this is not their fault, the whole “Outside The Box” routine still gets too much uuuuh and aaah’s and admiring looks while nodding the heads in agreement.
Still, my advice to all the managers, consultants, investors and other kind of leadership/consulting/creative people is to stop using this cliche because we’re on to you, we know what you’re doing. For real! Don’t just talk about it, Just Do It!
And to the rest, next time your boss uses this cliche again ask what he means with this and don’t just take the definition for an answer. Ask him for “Outside the Box” solutions or any direction to that and you will probably hear some “Uuuuuuuh” followed by maybe a “Yeah but bla bla bla” while his face slowly turns red and the meeting will soon end.
Btw, in case my good friend the investor reads this, the same disclaimer applies here as mentioned in my article about Internet Startups & Venture Capital, Word!