When you’re broke, you focus on every possible way to make even a bit of money – because, when you’re broke, every little really does help.
When you don’t know anyone in an area, you make an effort to go to pubs, cafes, and bars – not necessarily to get to know people, but in the hopes of overhearing conversations that give you a clue as to what’s going on, where you should be, what you should avoid, etc.
When you don’t have much, the things with which you surround yourself hold meaning, value, and stories.
And, when you don’t have a lot of time, you focus your energy and attention on getting what needs to be done, done. It’s why so many people report working better in the 48hrs or less before a deadline falls due, than in the entire six weeks (or six months) they’ve had to complete the project.
At Curveball Media, they’re throwing a literal “curveball” into the “accepted” Anglo-American way of working – the long hours, always-on, 24-7 availability demands that cause family breakdowns, mental health issues, and the petty resentments that lead to high staff turnover and low motivation.
They’re shortening the working day to six hours, introducing “core-hours-flexitime”, and generally recognising the fact that people have lives outside of the office. (I know – inconvenient or what?!)
It’s working. They’re getting more out of their staff, avoiding the “3pm slump”, seeing fewer “time wasting” activities (those aimless walks around the office, 20mins spent making a couple of cups of coffee, etc) because people know that they’re there to get things done, and that, if things get done, they get rewarded. Unlike in the typical working hours arrangement, where, if things get done, you get… more things to do.
Creative negativity and minimalism go quite nicely together – like rum and coke, apple and elderflower, and ice cream and the beach.