Everything I needed to know about teamwork I learned from The Avengers

Marvel-Avengers-Movie for blog

A week ago I had to endure some yearly recurrent training for work.  It consisted of sitting in a large, fluorescent-fixture-lit room while we were lectured about various topics of interest to us since the last we’d been victimized by this experience.

Several hours worth of it was essentially a workshop on how to play nice with your coworkers, using buzzwords like Risk Resource Management.  We learned to not be a douche to our coworkers and how to communicate effectively.  Rude hand gestures are apparently not appropriate anymore.

In any case, I started daydreaming after about 15 seconds of this.  We’re a pretty self-motivated, Type-A lot where we work, so being told how to talk to those around us usually causes a reaction akin to being stung by a poisonous animal: the venom initially shocks and alarms, we panic, then as our internal organs begin to shut down, we become peaceful and relaxed, eventually dropping off to sleep.

It struck me though that instead of watching all those videos and Powerpoints we should have just watched The Avengers.  I love that movie so this is not simply an excuse to watch it, but also a valuable chance to impart some great wisdom on how to work as a team.

In a nutshell, The Avengers is about a bunch of separate people who don’t play well with others and don’t much care to.  They go through the inevitable phase where their own internal struggles and incompatibilities threaten to tear them (and Manhattan) apart, though eventually they learn to work together.  They realize that they are stronger as a group than as individuals, and their strengths compliment each other.  There’s no need to fight amongst themselves, because they’re all after different things in the end anyway, so why fight over who ‘wins’?

I need to contact our Human Resources people and get them on this.  I’d much rather watch Captain America and Iron Man work out their differences and beat down Loki’s army than another video where a rude old crusty employee tells the new guy to go get him some coffee, after which we must discuss why we know that’s not the way to do things (because that video was made in 1965, and that’s how they did things back then, dammit!).

Now, who’s the lowest seniority employee I can find around here?  I want some coffee, dammit!


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