When I was the CEO of Atari – and still young enough to try to establish rules – we had a rule stating that employees could not bring their dogs into the office.
After all, the workplace was chaotic enough without adding canines to it.
But then we ran into a brilliant engineer who loved his dog so much he absolutely insisted on being able to bring her to work – otherwise, the engineer said, he would simply turn down our offer and find work elsewhere.
We would have not been able to this man and add his exceptional creative talents to our mix if we hadn’t decided to relax the no-dog rule.
However, making an exception didn’t resolve the issue. When other saws, this man brings in his dog, they wanted to bring theirs as well. We then had to find an inventive solution to keep the workplace from turning into a kernel, so we came up with Solomonic decision: other people weren’t permitted to bring their dogs to work every day, but they could on special occasions.
Everyone agreed. Problem solved.
We ended up liking the engineer’s particular dog so much we decided to hire her by giving her a badge and an employee number.
De-briefing of this Story
There are no rules that apply to everyone. In life, you will have to break certain rules so be comfortable with it.
“You are remembered for the rules you break.” – Douglas MacArthur
From the book – Finding the Next Steve Jobs by Nolan Bushnell with Gene Stone.
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