For whatever reason, I’ve always been a form of a minimalist. I’m the type of person that does have extra stuff and prefers not to replace things until absolutely necessary. This trait is certainly in vogue with today’s economy.
When I first heard the quote in the 1999 cult movie The Fight Club, “things you own end up owning you,” it made me smile. Later, bands like Papa Roach and Bleed in Vain would see the same thing I did and use it in their lyrics.
As a leader, it makes me thrifty, someone who wants expenditures justified and a person that can envision a lean operation free of clutter and inventory. Those who have visited my office can vouch that it is sparsely decorated and only work-in-progress is out. As a member of a team, I am more motivated by the opportunity to work on the difficult assignments than being rewarded with “stuff.” Knowing I am at one extreme of a continuum, I have been careful to observe others and be sure to recognize them as they prefer. This means to do it differently than what I like.
Have you carefully made this assessment when you recognize teammates? Have you lessons to share?
For the extreme minimalist, here is a look at The Story of Stuff with Anne Leonard.