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March 26, 2008

Squashing the ant-farm syndrome

ESPOO, Finland – To me, a company is like a person. They both have values and ethics
that guide everything they do. But, I just saw (again) the head-count
at Nokia. And, I’m one of 60,000. I should have ant-farm syndrome, but
I don’t.

Last week myself and 15 colleagues spent two days in the exclusive 8th floor conference rooms at HQ (my first time in seven years at Nokia). We’d been invited to spend the time learning how to make videos.

The idea? Simply to learn how to get everyone across the company to share their views and experiences. We’d been recruited as evangelists to share and explore examples of Nokia’s values in practice.

It might sound like a load of fluff, but it isn’t. This is one way the company tries to avoid the ant-farm syndrome where we could end up feeling like small parts in a big machine.

Video is strong, emotional and engaging. Our teachers were a pair of professional filmmakers driven by the value of telling an engaging story over the technicalities of cutting clips.

And we loved it. We even managed to produce a couple of decent videos.


PS: Let me know if you’d like to watch some.