This Foodie Friday we’re going to take a business point from the aftermath of our foodie experiences. Unless you’re in the habit of using paper plates and plastic cutlery, you usually have some dishes to wash after you eat. Many of us are fortunate to have dishwashers to do that job for us. We load the dishes, glassware, and cutlery into the box, add some soap, and go watch TV or read. Of course, the dishwasher can be used for so much more.
You can pretty much put anything that’s not wood or cast iron into your dishwasher for a good cleaning. OK, electronics aren’t such a great idea either. You can, however, let the dishwasher take care of doing some otherwise nasty cleaning jobs such as washing those pop-out range filters or all the buttons and drip pans from your stove. I’ve been known to stick my sweaty, smelly golf hats in there for a good washing (they actually sell plastic forms so the hats won’t shrink) and I also ran some glass light fixtures that were filthy through it. Obviously you don’t want to put anything through that’s hollow and can collect water that might precipitate mold formation later on but otherwise, with the aforementioned exceptions, anything plastic, metal, or glass is a candidate for a trip through the dishwasher.
What does this have to do with business? Most of us think of the dishwasher as a single-task machine. It washes kitchen stuff – dishes, etc. The truth is that it’s way more versatile. I think many of us think about many people this way. We don’t think the accountants are creative nor that the lawyers are marketers. I’ve worked with accountants and lawyers who definitely were. While it’s usually pretty apparent what someone’s strengths are, we don’t ask often enough how those strengths – critical thinking, writing, etc – can be applied in areas other than the one in which the person is currently using them.
You might have to remove the top rack to fit something like a garbage can in there. You might have to ask the accountant to adjust his or her paradigm too. The results, however, are worth it in both cases (who likes to wash a garbage can?). We need to keep an open mind about all things in business, don’t you think?