Employees Take Part In "Post-It Wars"

November 15, 2011

Unlocking Word Meanings
Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. camaraderie (n.) [kah-muh-rah-duh-ree] – a feeling of trust and familiarity between friends
Example: Many years of friendship forms a strong camaraderie between friends.

2. collage (n.) [kuh-lahzh] – an art form done by pasting various materials  on a single surface
Example: The artist made a masterpiece out of a collage of old photos, cartoon figures and newspaper clippings.
3. elaborate (adj.) [ih-lab-er-it] or [ih-lab-uh-reyt] – describes something done with careful planning and attention to detail
Example: The elaborate design of the gown impressed the other fashion designers.

4. skirmish (n.) [skur-mish] – a quick conflict or battle
Example: The security guards were able to stop the skirmish before it got worse.

5. instantaneous (adj.) [in-stuhn-tey-nee-uhs] – occurring with almost no delay
Example: He always has to give an instantaneous report whenever his boss arrives unannounced.

Read the text below.

A competition of Post-It note art between office spaces has broken out in corporate Paris. Some companies think it encourages corporate camaraderie, while a sociologist believes that it is a good form of communication.

The "Post-It Wars" began when Ubisoft, a computer gaming company, used Post-It notes to put up an image from the 1980s computer game “Space Invaders” on the window. The next day, BNP, France's largest bank located right across Ubisoft, posted an image of Pac-Man.

The collages soon swept across business districts in Paris. The images range from simple flowers or Hello Kitty, to more complicated images that can get as high as seven stories.

The management of each participating company thinks positively of the way employees use time and energy for these elaborate projects. Ubisoft's Fabrice Cambonet says getting people from all around the company involved gives them the chance to know each other.

However, the management of a bank has forbidden its employees to take part in the skirmishes, because no matter how artistic the creations are, the activity creates clutter.

Francois Dupuy, a sociologist, has a different take on this trend. He believes that the Post-It Wars prove how even in the era of Facebook, Twitter and other forms of instantaneous communication, the need to communicate with people surrounding them still persists. This is hard for employees in corporate complexes since they cannot open their windows to communicate with people from other buildings. But through Post-It Wars, companies in Paris found another way to do so.

Viewpoint Discussion
Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

·         What kinds of activities can encourage teamwork in the workplace?
·         Do you think it is okay to consider co-workers as friends? Please explain your answer.

Discussion B

·         What do you think about communication between corporate spaces mentioned in the article?
·         Do you think communication through “Post-It Wars” contributes to the productivity of the employees? Please explain your answer

November 15, 2011