Rebel in a Polyester Sash: Rehabbing Corporate Culture

A session at SXSW Interactive 2011

Saturday 12th March, 2011

3:30pm to 4:30pm (CST)

You work at a start up. You’re sketching out brilliant ideas on the back of beer-ringed napkins while slurping down ramen noodles and nursing your hangover from the massive party you had in your freakin’ cool loft the night before. Blah, blah, blah. Your culture rocks. I get it.

But what if you work for a dinosaur? An organization that needs cultural rehab more than Amy Winehouse needs straight up rehab? What if you work for an old-school, stereotypically uncool, butt-of-jokes and yet still loved non-profit that is now nationally known as an organization with a “weird child army in tablecloth dresses” (thanks SNL’s John Mulaney)? What if you work for, I don’t know, the Girl Scouts? A place where pantyhose, polyester, and clock watching are still raging like its 1985.

That’s where I work. And despite the many great things that the organization does, working there sucked until we decided to make it not suck anymore. We broke the rules and reinvented everything: clock watching turned into working however we want as long as the work gets done; pantyhose gave way to jeans; and the polyester met its demise on the Sacred Cow BBQ right next to a heap of senseless rules.

Learn how your culture can stop sucking too. Whether it’s sucked for five weeks or five years or half a century, there is still hope. Misery and work don’t have to be synonymous. Corporate doesn’t have to equal crap. If a rebel in a polyester sash can lead cultural rehab, you can rock the rehab too.

LEVEL: Beginner

About the speaker

This person is speaking at this event.
Jessica Lawrence

Executive Director of @NYTM, writer, speaker, Seth Godin FeMBA grad, blogger for @HarvardBiz. Tweets are my own.

Next session in Salon D

5pm That's Not My Job: Being A Career Generalist by Rebecca Sinclair, Poornima Vijayashanker, Noah Kagan and Jesse Taggert

5 attendees

  • briancarterKC
  • Jessica Lawrence
  • Lindsay Tanchuk
  • scottackerson
  • Whitney Hess

6 trackers

  • Andrea Nordgren
  • Cennydd
  • kathybabb
  • Mark Meeker
  • ɹǝɯoɹʞ (dılɟ) dılıɥd
  • Pete Hwang

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Time 3:30pm4:30pm CST

Date Sat 12th March 2011


Salon D, Hilton Austin Downtown

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