For those of you who follow our blog (according to Google Analytics there are quite a few), you'll recall that we started a Business Book Club a few months back.
The 1st major action we took was an idea from the book Drive by Daniel Pink called a FedEx Day. A FedEx Day is a day set aside where everyone in the company works on something that they are personally inspired to work on and think will improve the company but that they never have enough dedicated time to work on that idea. The reason it's called a FedEx day is that the person or team must absolutely, positively deliver something the next day.
As a side note, Daniel Pink took the idea for the FedEx day from experiences at Atlassian, a software development company. Atlassian co-opted the idea from Google's 20% Time. Google, I believe, may have taken the idea from 3M, which way back in the 1950s, instituted a 15% Time Program for engineers to innovate freely. And 3M took the idea from...
Ok, enough with the history and on to some of the fun results:
- Developed a functional Web-Based Timer Application that replaces the antiquated QuickBooks timer application
- Improved Sorting Functionality for our Case Studies
- Purged & shredded almost 15 years' worth of obsolete records.
- Significantly improved performance for our industrial OPC Data Collection Service
- Creation of new content for our Consulting Services web pages
- A company-wide Engineer Availability Web Part that will allow for better planning of company resources and allow us to better meet our customers' needs.
- A really cool functioning demo using an XBox Kinect (a stereo 3-D camera, typically used with the XBox video game) that allows for an interactive display case. Check out an overview of it here and a quick demo here.
- Rebranding a significant amount of our marketing material with our new tagline and logo.
- Significant improvements to our Ping Pong Demo System, including the ability to use a Wii controller to operate the paddle.
The day was a lot of fun, allowed us to work on some projects that we just never seem to have the time to get to, learn some new technologies, and improve both our internal and external operations.