Cubicle Fugitive Scribble
Oct 12, 2011

The whole truth

By: Kalvin MacLeod

So there’s Chris’s version of how we got our scribble and then there is the real truth. Not that everything Chris said isn’t actually true, it’s just more politically correct than I would have put it.

Sitting around the room with five people and discussing the merits of one scribble over another is a fascinating examination of personalities as a whole. The real struggle was not to find the right scribble but to find the right identity. Exactly what scribble was going to sum up who we are as a company in 2011. It may seem a little ridiculous that any scribble could come to represent what a company stands for, but, now that we’ve gone through the process ourselves, I believe staring at scribbles is great group therapy. In fact, I'd recommend the process as a great exploration exercise to any company looking to rebrand. Get everyone involved to draw a scribble, paste them all on a board, ask the committee of decision makers to choose one and then sit back and watch the sparks fly.

In our case in particular, and although we all get along quite swimmingly here, the Great Scribble Debate was one for the ages.  At first we all liked a specific scribble and then I didn’t like it anymore (don’t know why, but one day it just turned into a butterfly) and then, none of us really liked the scribble we had agreed upon and then some liked a different one, and I didn’t like any of them. Then there was one that I liked but everyone thought was too angry and then I was angry because no one liked what I was certain was the true representation of a scribble.

The battle raged on. Another round of scribbles and one looked like ninja star (Perfect, JT said. No way in hell, Morgan disagreed--of course, I played peace keeper and suggested the angry scribble instead). Another round of scribbles and I think it was Andrea who said, "they are all starting to look the same."

"Except that one," I said. It looks like the Starship Enterprise." Blank stares. No consensus.

It's funny, if you look around my desk right now you’ll see scribbles on everything. Everyone had a pencil in hand trying to scribble like they weren’t trying to, but what I found was that when you think about scribbling you just end up drawing instead. Even worse, everything I put on paper looked like a butterfly. Erggh! The dispute boiled down to one thing, the truthfulness of a scribble. Can you design a scribble or does it need to be completely random? I thought random, Chris and Morgan thought designed. They both brought up good points. If we used something completely random, what does that say about us as a company. We’re not random are we? I can still hear them ask. Around that time, it was common to see the angry scribble appear above my head. I don’t like that they were right. As much as random, messiness appeals to me, it’s the wrong message. We take random messiness and make it simpler. We’re the anti-random-messiness, in a way. So we needed another round of designs. Chris, as chief scribbler, took everyone’s best attempt at describing what a scribble meant to them (the lines need to thinner or thicker, there should be a tail, less tail, more sharp edges, less sharp edges, no more butterflies, MORE messiness) and came up with a scribble that is actually both ordered and chaotic, designed but still messy. It’s something we call ‘calculated audacity’ and, to us, is a clear identifier of our business. Our scribble says this: We take your complex business objectives and turn them into actionable and measureable solutions. Basically, we take chore of marketing and make it simpler. I mean really, if we’re talking truths here, who doesn’t want that?

Cubicle Fugitive - Professional Services Marketing -- Simplified
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