What does Roger Waters (the heart ‘n soul of Pink Floyd) have to do with the accounting profession? Sure, one answer is he’s keeping several accountants employed, but that’s not the gold medal answer. How often have you heard “we can’t do this” in the accounting workplace? Accounting firms are a bit famous for this mentality; although, many progressive firms have fortunately trounced that tired old mindset (their wall has come down).
While viewing the “extras” on the DVD The Wall: Live in Berlin, there was a fascinating segment about how Roger’s team conquered the unthinkable. This massive concert in 1990–not terribly long after the Berlin Wall came down–was staged on vacant terrain between Potsdamer Platz and the Brandenburg Gate, a location that was part of the former no-man’s land of the Berlin Wall. Amazingly, the team assembled overcame the “we can’t do this” lack of spirit to produce a live event–attended by about 400,000 people–on this piece of ground that hadn’t been used in decades. Oh, and it was also broadcast live in 50 countries or so, which was a massive undertaking in itself in 1990.
This Berlin benefit concert in which Roger Waters led an all-star cast in performing his famous concept album included artists of varied temperaments. Comments were made in the interview segment of this DVD about Van Morrison being “difficult” and Sinead O’Connor being “too grand” (Waters actually made comments about her; he was obviously not pleased with her attitude and lack of cooperation). On the other hand, guess who was called “a joy to work with?” Answer: Thomas Dolby. Yes, the goofball who created that annoying little pop hit “She Blinded Me With Science.” In your place of business, how do you handle the Sinead types? It’s certainly tougher than dealing with the Dolby’s, without a doubt. Regardless of your age or work experience, like me, you can easily think about past and present bosses and co-workers who fit into either camp. The key ingredient in making those relationships work is overcoming the “we can’t do this” inclination (tearing down that mental wall). Really, it’s just more skating on the thin ice of modern life.
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