Artefact Cards Blog
It may seem early to talk about Christmas. It's certainly too early to be eating mince pies. But it's not too early to be working out what you're sending your clients this Christmas.
These are our glorious all-leather, high quality Field Wallets, as made by Bernard and his family up at Lichfield Leather here in the UK. They really are beautiful, check them out here.
Last year, people asked "can we do custom ones for clients as Christmas presents?", and we said "no, sorry, it's too late". This year, we're letting you know early enough, to avoid disappointments.
When we say 'custom' we mean that you can replace the custom printed yellow leather panel you see below with whatever you like.
As well as the premium leather Field Wallet, you'll also get cards inside the wallet, a box of Artefact Cards to restock the Field Wallet with, and a custom black Sharpie, all inside a clean white presentation box.
Prices are as follows (excluding shipping & VAT)
50 - £18.99 per kit
100 - £16.99 per kit
200 - £15.99 per kit
(further discounts available for larger orders)
We need your expressions of interest by Monday 28th September in order to get them to you by 1st December.
Please email us here with all orders or to ask more questions.
As part of our wee initiative to help Artefact Cards users see what other people are doing, Jason has sent in this idea. It's really great, illustrating how you can bring all voices in a team into a conversation (instead of just the usual more vocal ones), and then turn a conversation which could be lost into a visible part of the environment that people work in.
Thanks for sharing, Jason. If you have a story to share about how you've used Artefact Cards, just send us an email to hello [at} artefactshop.com
I'm the Personnel Manager in a large supermarket. I wanted to explore how to improve morale.
Normally if you get a group of colleagues together only one or two will speak up, so you don't get a representative view.
On this occasion I gave everyone an Artefact Card and a Sharpie, I simply asked them to draw on one side of the card what makes them "Happy in work" and on the other side draw what they would like to see being done differently in our store to achieve this.
We then went around the table and each person talked about their card. It was great I had tangible out from every colleague that I spoke to and these then become part of a larger display of our action planning
I was minding my own business on twitter yesterday, as you do, when friend and long-time Artefact practitioner Ian Fitzpatrick posted up this, a picture of his New Year's Resolution Grid. We thought we'd have a wee quick chat about it, in time for the New Year...
Hey Ian, (for the last time in 2014 probably)… has it been a good year?
I don’t think that the returns are in yet. Without going down a rabbit hole of ‘arbitrary endpoints’, the last twelve months for me were marked by events and transitions that will likely not be realized until 2015 or 2016. That said, far more good than bad transpired in my life this year.
That’s great to hear. Earlier today, you posted up this, a brilliant and simple framework for New Year’s Resolutions using your Artefact Cards - what prompted you to get systematic about it?
At a certain point, you’ve already quit smoking and the things you want or need to do take on a different posture. There are plenty of things I’d like to do — make more time for reading, run a 10k — and many I need to do — plan for the kids’ college, lose 20 pounds. Certainly, the challenges get knottier with age, and they tend not to be ‘solvable’, but rather they take on different forms over time.
I tend to like systems for working through these kinds of challenges, and decided to apply one to my resolutions for two reasons:
1. To ensure a thoughtful balance between those things that I want to do and those that I need to do.
2. To acknowledge that long-term goals tend to be outcomes of a series of shorter-term tasks. This is particularly helpful in prioritizing the output.
This was, as an aside, prompted by your own 'fidelity v. resolution’ grid system.
Ah yes, I’ve been thinking a lot about that. It’ll be the centrepiece for the Smithery 2015 projects I think. Expect a blog post or three on that first week back. Back to your grid though - do you already have a stack of things you’d slot into these nine categories? Is the framework helping you think of more?
I don’t know that it’s helping me think of more, but it certainly helps me think of goals as having multiple stages, such that I can view a life goal through the lens of now / next / later.
I actually complicated matters even more, and constructed four identical grids: finance, family, career and personal. What I love about this particular approach is finding that seemingly divergent end goals each begin with similar — or identical — near-term steps.
Where I think this ultimately takes me is the realization that, at 40 with a family and a firm to say grace over, my resolutions are less about the things I will or won’t do, and a bit more about the way I prioritize my time and resources. For example, looking across the notes I’ve made it’s clear to me that taking better care of my physical self is a first step on the path toward several long-term goals, many of which aren’t in any way fitness-related.
I was reading Sophie Lovell’s book on Dieter Rams over the holidays, and she talks about how Erwin Braun, one of the sons who took over the business in the fifties, was a great believer in the requirement of physical wellbeing - he applied the maxim “a sound mind in a healthy body” to every one and every thing in the business. Perhaps knowledge work should be best done on the move?
I’ve never spent much time contemplating knowledge work in motion, though I’ll admit that a brief flirtation with walking meetings failed out of the gate.
What I am more certain of is that my own capacity for clear thought and information processing is inextricably linked to both the exercise and sleep I get. For me, healthy body has a bit less to do with Fassbender abs than it does a clear, rational head — which is at the root of the work I (purport to) do.
But it’s also a really pragmatic concern: it’s rather absurd to build financial plans for retirement without resolving to be physically present for it. The older I get, the more that these concerns become interconnected systems — and so it only makes sense (to me) to develop a system in which to contemplate them.
I’m going to sit down and give your grid a go, I think, and see what happens. I’d encourage others reading this to do the same too. Any tips for us?
Sure. Start by considering your own grid. Not everyone thinks in utilitarian terms, nor in stages. If it doesn’t come easily, try to construct variations on the vertices. More critically, don’t try and fill in the grid completely — its entirely possible that you don’t have any ‘well-advised next steps’.
Alternately, invent (and share) an altogether better system.
Thanks to Ian for taking the time out to share his thoughts - if anyone fancies giving the method a go (or making up their own as Ian suggests), send us the pictures on twitter (@Artefact_Cards) and we'll post them up on here.
If one of your resolutions is to "draw more", then we've been testing out a daily drawing newsletter called Sixty Second Sketches through December - a simple little prompt and hint of something to draw. It's proved really popular, so we'll continue it through 2015. You can sign up to receive it here - https://tinyletter.com/Artefact
Happy New year, everyone, see you in 2015.