Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Corporate Jester

Improve efficiency with song and dance
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While many people already feel that they may be the fool in the office, this real fool will lift spirits with a little song and dance.

A properly-attired jester, brightly colored, bells on shoes, the whole bit, will come to the office to play songs, juggle, tell jokes, and otherwise give a boost to employees.

For employees who need a little ego boost, jesters specializing in buffoonery would be available for things like pie throwing, pratfalls, and general mockery.

mcoen, Mar 15 2001

Same idea. http://www.globalid.../diyfut/DIY-51.HTML
At www.globalideasbank.org. [jutta, Mar 15 2001]

Paul Birch, BA corporate jester. http://pf.fastcompa...line/19/nofool.html
Fastcompany article about the guy mentioned in the globalideasbank.org idea. [jutta, Mar 15 2001]

Peter Sinclair: Alex's Restaurant http://www.sideroad.../alex/column14.html
Comic strip using this idea. [jutta, Mar 15 2001]

Ceoster http://www.pseudodictionary.com/ceoster
[bristolz, Oct 04 2004]

[link]






       He would wear normal business attire on dress-down Fridays, of course.
Aristotle, Mar 15 2001
  

       Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe the true purpose of a jester is not to entertain the king's court, but to criticize/satirize the king himself, and thus help the king avoid the trap of believing in his own infallibility. The entertainment aspect comes from the fact that, as a matter of self-preservation, the jester must make his satire witty and amusing enough to make the king smile.   

       I'd say this type of jester is even more needed in a corporate setting than the one who entertains the employees.
beauxeault, Mar 15 2001
  

       [beauxealt]'s annotation reminded me of the person that Roman Emperors employed to whisper "Ceasar, you are but mortal". The corporate jester could whisper the same thing to executives.
Aristotle, Mar 16 2001
  

       Well, I'm in upper management.
beauxeault, Mar 16 2001
  

       I was agreeing, in a way that I hope came across as self-effacing humor.   

       In all honesty, I really do find more real competence *on average* among the upper managers I encounter than *on average* among those lower in their respective hierarchy, though the division is far less exclusive than many managers would like us all to believe. I think the reason many managers become so clownish is that they get the idea that more responsibility somehow makes them less fallible. They seem to think that because mistakes are more costly at their level, they are somehow less likely to make them. And maintaining a lie makes anyone an obvious hypocrite, eventually. So I was serious when I said I thought a corporate jester on the medieval model would be more valuable.   

       And I agree with PeterSealy, but the comics would more aptly fill the traditional jester role if Doonesbury satirized Jane Pauley's attempts to hold on to her career as she ages, and if Dilbert skewered United Features Syndicate for shamelessly stealing the HalfBakery concept with no acknowledgment.
beauxeault, Mar 16 2001
  

       Scott Adams quit his actual engineering job a few years ago, and I've wondered if this has anything to do with my declining interest in the strip. I think he depends on reader submissions for ideas now. I think the Corporate Jester idea works better if the Jester is assigned to one particular person, or perhaps a small group at one company. Otherwise (with the Dilbert model) it's too easy for the people being satirized to assume that someone else is the target, and it's too easy for the jester to take cheap shots at targets that sound funny but don't actually need ridicule. The Jester could also entertain people with juggling tricks while they're waiting for everyone to show up at meetings, etc..
wiml, Mar 18 2001
  

       At the last company I worked for we had one of these. His title was something like DB Admin or something...but his real role turned out to be the jester who kept us all amused
goodie, Mar 18 2001
  

       Wouldn't the ringing of the bells be a little distracting? Corporate mime would be a less than viable solution, so croissant anyway.
Jezzie, May 27 2003
  

       My boss already fulfills the role superbly. Yesterday he stubbed his toe on the drinks machine, spilt ink over/in his keyboard and had his badly-parked car towed away.
git, May 31 2003
  

       Some people I know (actors) actually did this job for one of the big management consultancies a few years ago.
pertinax, Aug 17 2006
  
      
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