Not long ago I spoke to the members of a communication department in a major corporation about how to tell a more authentic and thus compelling brand story. It's the kind of conversation that, if you have to have it, you're up against it.
As an outsider, all you can really do is describe self-actualized institutions, and see if it sparks an idea. So I talked about Southwest Airlines. I talked about General Electric. I showed a video of Starbucks' CEO Howard Schultz, talking about the personal origins of the company's innovative benefits policy.
It hit me on the way home that I should have talked about a guy I saw the other day near the corner of Ashland Avenue and Division Street, here in Chicago.
The four-foot-tall man of about 60 clomped his way down the sidewalk pigeon-toed, in big work boots.
He wore a sweatshirt with a picture of a red crustacean and the words, "Don't bother. I'm crabby."