Is your workforce like a bunch of fresh flowers or dead roses?

Fresh flowers have life, energy, colour, beauty and give off aromas and positive feelings to those around them. They make and leave a great impression.


Dying flowers need resuscitation. They’re on their last legs and on the way out, ready for the compost bin. Not even water can save them. They’ve been left to die a slow death, been unattended to and left hanging in hope that someone might revive them in time! Somehow, they hang on far longer than expected and it requires someone to take the initiative to clean them up and chuck them out.


And plastic flowers? Well, let’s not go there. Plastic flowers are fake, have no substance and require no maintenance while showing a lack of care. They look plain and have no taste.


It might sound weird, but I love fresh flowers for many reasons. I have a weekly dose delivered to my office, carefully selected and placed at reception and I also really like giving fresh flowers to various people at different times (as all us men should).


Now, could you imagine buying dead flowers or near dead flowers and showcasing them at reception or on your desk at work? What would others – your staff, customers and suppliers – think of you? Dead flowers can do much damage! It shows a lack of care and interest.


If I had to assess your business and your team, how would they rate on my “fresh flower” scale?


Let’s do a spot check and check the health of your staff and plot them on a continuum from dead flowers to fresh flowers:




The fresh flower scale is a reflection of you, your business and your team. This is my whacky theory, yet so accurate.


Fresh flowers are easy to spot. They look good and feel good with a positive attitude, clear goals, high levels of motivation and drive with aligned goals. They produce a high quality of work and maintain a high level of engagement. It’s refreshing to walk into an office with a fresh flower team and “smell the roses”. Take in the aroma. It fuels growth and success.


However, fresh flowers don’t stay fresh on their own! They require maintenance, love, attention and care and consideration for their future. Leave them on their own for too long and they start to drift and waver and may even look for greener pastures. Alternatively they begin their slow decline until they become “death warmed up”.


Dying flowers are everywhere in companies today. They collect a pay cheque and are disengaged. Their goals and values aren’t aligned to company goals and bring others down. They complain, whine and wish they were doing something else. “Dead wood” can hide in larger organisations where mediocrity is often tolerated until they are made redundant. In smaller or entrepreneurial companies, they pop their heads up quickly and it takes a leader to identify and take action – whether that be to keep applying water, or possibly apply weed killer and terminate.


If you have dying flowers in your company, it’s time to pronounce their time of death – NOW.


Choose your fresh flowers wisely


Don’t go by price or what’s on special. Choose those that are “in season” and not on their way out. Know the names of the flowers you purchase (I’m a stickler for that – most men don’t bother). Buy them with the goal of maintaining them, and seeing them improve and flourish rather than leaving them isolated and requiring constant replacement. Ensure they add to the aroma of your office.


Which office would you rather walk into every day? There’s nothing worse than the smell of old flowers with that brown water. The next time you go into a florist, take a moment and enjoy the aroma. It doesn’t get fresher than that. Spend a moment and picture your team and your office full of fresh flowers – aim for that.


Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments