Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Inward Bound courses

Personal development for the over-confident
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Many businesses send their employees on courses where they are supposed to demonstrate resourcefulness, learn teamwork and gain leadership skills through pursuing arduous physical challenges in difficult conditions. This may be valuable for shy employees who need to gain confidence in their abilities, but what about those who already enjoy leadership a bit too much? They are, after all, far more likely to lead their companies into disaster than those who have reservations about their own leadership. I suggest that alternative courses could take the over-confident, cocky, privately schooled fast-trackers and teach them humility. Rather than giving them the opportunity to parade around some bit of countryside congratulating themselves on having built a bivouac or crossed a river, these courses would help them to achieve a realistic estimate of their own worth as human beings. Smug employees would be placed in situations in which their oh-so-valuable skills, gym-honed muscles and latest-model mobile phones were of no value, and forced to contemplate the meaninglessness of their own existence. I'm not quite sure how this could best be achieved, though. Perhaps they could be made to tour every inch of the nearest military cemetery, or something?
Peller, Aug 30 2001

Breaking news: Not every problem attributable to low self-esteem http://www.guardian...273,4326450,00.html
Article about a recent scientific paper whose conclusion is that far from having low self-esteem, a lot of behavioural problems are caused by too much self-esteem, not too little. [vincebowdren, Feb 11 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]


       Give them HalfBakery accounts.
hippo, Aug 30 2001

       You could subject them to experiences detailed in nasty psychological experiments. For example, M.E.P. Seligman's work on learned helplessness included placing dogs in a cage, then shocking them. Found that dogs that have no way to escape the shocks will learn helplessness. Now, if this were performed on humans as an experiment, it would be cruel. But performed as therapy, it's fair game.   

       The "executive monkey" experiments probably wouldn't work with this type of person - it requires that they actually have empathy for others (remember the Simpson's episode where they all shocked each other?).
quarterbaker, Aug 30 2001

       How's this for a scenario: send 'em to a Star Trek convention, and put them on the panel of a discussion group. (Potentially in an inappropriate costume -- TNG garb on a TOS panel, or whatever.)   

       Make sure the guinea pigs are inadequately briefed on the topic, then sit back and watch the hardcore Trek geeks tear them a new 'shuttle bay'.
MrWrong, Aug 30 2001

       Hey! Nice idea! I like MrWrong's suggestion, but I don't think a really egotistical manager would care much for the opinions of sci-fi geeks. But maybe if you tell him that all the Trek geeks are also very senior managers from several influential companies...
Nadia, Aug 30 2001

       Great idea! I'll be the first one to sign up! If I just had a little humility, I'd be perfect!
Bonarein, Aug 30 2001

       Get the Taleban to run it.
Gordon Comstock, Aug 30 2001

       This could be something like a 'ropes' course, only with a few differences.   

       There would be no way to untangle the ropes.   

       And remember that 'trust exercise' where you fall backwards onto other people's inter-locked arms? Forget the interlocking arms. Just let 'em fall.   

       Throw in some live munition in the outdoor challenges. Just to mix it up.   

       Keep track of whoever does the best, and then fire them.
RayfordSteele, Feb 07 2002

       You could combine this with conventional team-building activities. Send everyone out on a big cross-country walk, and fire the first 10 people to finish, since they're obviously not interested in helping their colleagues, only in showing off.
pottedstu, Feb 08 2002

       I have nothing to add to this idea. Croissant.
DrBob, Feb 08 2002

       ...and yet...
phoenix, Feb 08 2002

       ...and yet, again...
phoenix, Feb 08 2002

       try sending them back to school (secondary is best) if possible use a de-bigulator on them to take them back down to just above the average size but then because they are adults they will be overtaken by everyone else who they probably picked on for being small - add in badly fitting uniform and moderate unpopularity and theyll be a gibbering heap on the floor within a week
chud, Feb 08 2002

       I too also like MrWrongs idea.
kaz, Feb 08 2002

       George, I feel humbled.
DrBob, Feb 11 2002

       it will wear off, dear.
po, Feb 11 2002


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