Every Wednesday morning we have a company meeting where everyone from all over the company gets together to talk about what happened during the last week and where we are as a company. Josh’s mom cooks us breakfast and we all sit down and eat some delicious food while we are having our meeting. One of the new things that have been added to our meetings in the last year or so is a dedicated time where anybody in the company can offer new ideas about how to improve anything we do.
The spinning wheel is part of a game we play with our new ideas. Originally we used it in our retail store during certain sales to let customers spin for what discount they received at checkout, but we repurposed it and put it up in our break room. Everybody that comes up with a new idea gets a chance to spin the wheel and then the person with the highest spin gets to spin again for a prize.
We have all kinds of prizes. Some will help you fill your car up with gas, or give you a free game of golf. Some give you a free beer or allow you to take off an hour or two early or come in late with pay any time you want to use it. Taped to the top of the wheel is a $100 bill. If you find that you don’t like the prize you won, or are feeling really lucky, you can pick one of the numbers and spin again. If you land on the number you picked, the $100 bill on the top is all yours, but if you miss it then you don’t get anything.
The best part is when people go for $100. Only a couple of people have won the $100 in the eight months or so that we have been playing the game. When somebody does decide to go for it everybody gets excited for them, and everyone is cheering for them and hoping they win.
The ideas we get range from improving the carts we using in production, to putting a product together with a different kind of glue, to how we organize and categorize our products in our catalog. Anything in any part of the company is open for discussion. We know that there aren’t a lot of other businesses like us out there, and when it comes to handcrafting gourds at the scale that we do it there really is nobody else. Since we don’t have that outside competition the challenge then becomes competing with ourselves and to always be improving.
So what started out as a fun way for our customers to save some money in our store turned into a fun way for us to constantly improve our business. We’ve already got a lot of great ideas out of this simple little game and we hope there are many more to come!