Once upon a time in a land called Lamron, there was a castle called Lamron Castle.
The town was always threatened by dragons that would appear out of the sky and for no apparent reason, these dragons would wreak havoc and cause problems for the townspeople.
Every household owned a brass horn that they would blow, to sound to the knights of Lamron Castle that a dragon or dragons were in sight.
The job of the knights was to kill the dragons with special magic arrows.
The King of Lamron Castle charged a fee to everyone for the service of killing the dragons
These magic arrows were the only thing that would get rid of the dragons and were manufactured by local Lamronians inside Tower Two of Lamron Castle.
Arrow making was not only a boring job but a very tedious one.
This story is about how the magic arrow makers turned their mundane jobs into valuable and rewarding ones through self empowerment.
One day 3 of the workers, Art Halegiver (the shaft turner), Mac (the head shaper) and Wendy (the wand waver) were having lunch and while discussing their individual jobs, realized how unhappy they were with their jobs.
They wondered what would happen if things didn't improve. How would they take care of their families if everyone continued to leave Lamron and there wouldn't be any use for the arrows?
Apparently, many of the local Lamronians were unhappy living in Lamron and were moving away. They had found that other nearby towns did not charge as much for the dragon killing service as Lamron did.
Meanwhile, back at Lamron Castle, the King was meeting with his Duke of Accounting and Duke of Operations, and found that much of the gold received for their services was running low.
They found that the costs of making the arrows was far exceeding what they were charging and since the dragons were appearing more and more often, the demand for the arrows was also exceeding their production output.
It was the Duke of Market Research that pointed out to the King that Lamronians were leaving their town in search of cheaper services.
The King immediately called a meeting of the workers to request they speed up production of the arrows.
The atmosphere of the work environment had been one of grey gloom & fog but once the King gave his workers a "pep" talk, the gloom lifted slightly and there seemed to be a sort of buzz in the air. No one could quite describe it other than it being almost a feeling of electricity or lightening and even began to slightly change from grey to colors much like a rainbow.
The castle workers were so charged up that they began to experience a feeling of energy and it contributed to the uplift in their spirit and productivity was enhanced..
But after a few days, the colors began to return to grey again and the workers began to lose their energy. The King noticed this and was upset because he didn't feel he should have to continuously give "pep" talks in order for the workers to do better.
So he insisted that his Dukes do something to remedy this situation or it would be "off with your heads".
Meanwhile, the dragons kept coming.
So one day while Art, Mac and Wendy were discussing the change in attitudes around Tower Two, Art started complaining that it was everyone else's fault as to why everyone was unhappy yet when Mac and Wendy asked him "what could be done about it?", Art had no resolutions, only more complaints. So Mac and Wendy suggested that maybe if they just tried harder, then maybe things would improve again.
For the next few weeks, they checked in with one another to see how trying harder was going. And week after week, it was the same old answer, "ok I guess".
Then it occurred to them that although they were trying harder, they really weren't sure what it was exactly they were supposed to be trying harder at. All 3 of them had only done their 1 type of job year after year and now came to find that what was really the problem was boredom.
They needed to understand what the true purpose of their individual job function was and how it related as a whole to the arrow making business.
So again, they suggested to one another to try harder but to try harder at keeping in mind how their particular job was important to the overall task at hand which was making magic arrows.
Suddenly, with this change of attitude, once again between themselves, they sensed the energy and buzz in the air, only this time the buzz seemed to have more of a "Zapp" to it.
Weeks again passed and produced more and more arrows and when they checked in with one another to check on progress, Mac asked Art how many arrow shafts he had produced and asked Wendy how many wands she'd waved and realized they didn't know because they failed to keep track of their progress. Then they agreed to set goals for themselves so they could measure their workload. So they began a process to monitor themselves and once they saw their improvement, "ZAPP", instant gratification! They for once were taking charge for their own work instead of relying on the "castle" to do it for them.
But now they were finding out that although they were making more arrows, it was taking up more time which was not allowed in Tower Two. So the 3 of them got together again to see how they could once again improve the arrow making process so they could make more arrows but in the same amount of time as they used to. This is where Art suggested they look around their work areas to see what was unnecessary and could eliminate in order to make their time spent more productive.
Finally they came to a stumbling block again because although they were improved in their skills and job, their jobs weren't the only ones involved with making magic arrows. They needed to development a way to involve the others who were involved with the process, like the feather gluers and the twine tyers
But once again, the colors of the castle began to change again into the grey gloom and dragons appearances were on the rise.
Then a stranger visited the castle. This visitor was David D. Ignatius, a Spell Wizard. Mr. Ignatious was on his way to visit the King to help out with improving the magic arrow making process by teaching them how to use their own special powers of empowerment. He would do this by giving him a copy of his Spell Book.
Art, Mac & Wendy spoke to him about what they could do to empower themselves and Mr. Ignatious gave them a copy of the book. They took the book and began reading the spells one by one. The excitement once again filled the air because they thought it would be easy to achieve their goals if all they had to do was read the book. But Mr. Ignatious explained that it was not just about reading the book, they had to actually add power to their reading and casting the spells was an important part of the process. But Art, Mac and Wendy didn't feel they had any special powers that could help cast the spells but Mr. Ignatious assured them that they only thing they needed was to believe in themselves. And with that, he left.
So the next day they began to cast the spells.
· When someone needed help, the 3 of them would respond with a positive attitude, not like the rude one they would have in the past. With this positive attitude came "Zapp" and the workers began to feel better about themselves and towards others. In otherwords, treat others as you would like to be treated "The Golden Rule".
· Next, the positive attitude took another turn. Instead of listening to complaints and giving back negative feedback, the approach was to listen and respond with empathy.
· Communication was important in order for the spells to work. So to have all the spells work, it was important to let the others know that they were important too. In the past, asking for help was a sign of weakness, but, in trying out the new spells, they learned if you asked for help, you might just learn something new and by doing this you involved others and in turn you had other involved and learning new things that they otherwise would never had learned. "Zapp"!
So now that the excitement bug had bitten the workers, it was time to present their newfound attitude to the Boss so that they could implement all their new ideas they had come up with. But in the past, the Boss was not always receptive to change, especially from workers. So again they turned to the Spell Book.
Although everyone was feeling good about themselves, productivity wasn't really increasing anymore. All areas of Tower Two were starting to lag and no one was getting the "Zapp" feeling as often as they had been. They began to look around and wonder what else could they do to remedy this situation.
· What they were finding was they had many problems but everyone had been so excited about improving moral, that they lost sight of their goals.
· Just when they thought they had already tried everything, they turned to the Spell Book.
So now that Art, Mac & Wendy knew what to do for themselves, it was now important to make sure others followed suit if they were all to be part of the final goal, more Magic Arrows!
Then they came up with an idea on how they could continue to improve productivity by cross training each other. This wasn't going to be easy because everyone had only done their one job for years. They didn't KNOW how to do anything else. So they devised a plan.
· First they would teach Gramps, the twine tyer how to coach others on how to tie twine;
· Next, they would teach Fernanda, the feather gluer, the same thing
All were reluctant to this approach but once they started seeing results and realized they weren't bored anymore, "Zapp"! they began to feel more in control.
To keep the positive attitude, yet another spell was used. You see the workers began to feel that they were working harder but were not getting the support from the "Castle", the King and the Boss. In the past, they never received support but now it seemed like it was time. They were enjoying the "Zapp" feeling so much whenever they received encouragement and positive feedback about their good work, that they wanted it to continue. They wanted to feel important.
In reviewing with the Boss the Spell Book, they came upon a section marked "Warning: People in an organization have two kinds of needs. They have personal needs. That is, people need to think of themselves as being valued. They need to have their feelings respected. And each important member of the group.However, people in an organization also have practical needs. Practical needs are things like getting the right information, having a clear direction set, having the proper tools, meeting schedules and so on".
It was here they reviewed The InterACTION Spell.
After this new spell was cast, the workers started to realize that they hadn't seen the grey gloom for some time now. The colors of the rainbow were starting stick around a lot more. They seemed to really enjoy
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