Motivational Monday :: Thinking Outside the Oval

Monday, July 07, 2008


From an archived article:
Farmers in the southern Japanese town of Zentsuji have figured out how to grow their watermelons so they turn out square.

It's not a fad. The technique actually has practical applications. "The reason they're doing this in Japan is because of lack of space," said Samantha Winters of the National Watermelon Promotion Board in Orlando, Florida.

A fat, round watermelon can take up a lot of room in a refrigerator, and the usually round fruit often sits awkwardly on refrigerator shelves.

But clever Japanese farmers have solved this dilemma by forcing their watermelons to grow into a square shape. Farmers insert the melons into square, tempered glass cases while the fruit is still growing on the vine.

The square boxes are the exact dimensions of Japanese refrigerators, allowing full-grown watermelons to fit conveniently and precisely onto refrigerator shelves.

But cubic fruit comes with a caveat: Each square watermelon costs 10,000 yen, the equivalent of about $82. Regular watermelons in Japan cost from $15 to $25 each.

Wedding planners tend to go with the masses when it comes to how to plan a wedding or how to run their individual businesses.  And yes, there are certain procedures and methods that don't need to be reinvented - they work well and it wouldn't be good sense to try to change something simply for the sake of being different.

There are many practices and thought patterns within the wedding planning industry though that perhaps need a second look.  Some are outdated, some simply aren't smart from a business perspective.  Why do we do things a certain way?  Is it really the most efficient way to get something done?  Do I really have to follow a certain business model just because certain groups set it forth as law?  And so on.

Don't be afraid to look at things differently and question why you do things the way you do.  If another method works better for you (and is ethical), don't be afraid to launch out and try it - even if nobody else in your area is doing so.

As Bette Davis once said: "If everyone likes you, you're doing something wrong."  Being different can allow you to charge a premium for your services, as in the case of these square watermelon, but it often makes competitors uncomfortable.  Make sure that you're prepared to handle being disliked for no reason other than trying something new and being successful at it. 

{photo via CNN}

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