Want to get ahead in business? Have a fake death.
Business types are obsessed with team building and betterment aren't they? They shoot each other up the colon at paint balling weekends and get dippy blokes in to do faux Primal Scream therapy, leaving grown men weeping up salty pain about their harsh mothers in the name of becoming more 'proactive' in the workplace.
The latest one I've heard about - which you, mental reader, might like to try - is The Fake Death. Over in South Korea, people can have a funeral long before they've died for a mere $25 at what is called a 'Coffin Academy'.
You get to write your own tombstone epitaphs, weep uncontrollably as you bid your loved ones fare-thee-well and then, for the punchline, climb into a caskets in a candlelit chapel, get nailed-in and pretend you're dead for 10 minutes.
The thinking behind this is that you re-evaluate you life... that you begin to think more deeply about what's truly important to you. Kyobo, a big insurance company in South Korea, now insists that that all of its staff must “die” at some point in their tenure.
South Korea has one of the highest suicide rates in the world, so seeing as they're all clearly death-obsessed, this stroke of corporate-masochism is even more mind-melting.
Imagine it! Sat in a room full of people, all crowing about how great their epitaph reads and seeing if the coffin academy staff wouldn't mind letting them stay in the coffin for 30 minutes, just to show off to the other corpses-in-suits. All character building exercises like this tend to promote a certain amount of competitiveness, so imagine the sniggers as one guy pounds from inside his own tomb begging to be release whilst a bunch of blokes in braces laugh their crispy little tits off at how weak their colleague is.
Over in the Times, another side-effect is shown, and that's the unbearable smugness of being alive after a session like this. Apparently, one chap is now "insufferable" and keeps blurting on about how much he loves his family and all that shite. All in the name of enterprise. Maybe some efficiency bloke saw Isaac Asimov's quote: "If my doctor told me I had only six minutes to live, I wouldn't brood. I'd type a little faster"?
That said, I'm sure there's a fair few of you who would like to hear a businessperson or two nailed inside a wooden box desperately gulping for air in between inconsolable tears. Your boss might be thinking of trying this on you and your team right now.