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Schiphol Airport Urinals. Habits. Holiday Reading Material.

I think the title may have caught your attention! I’ll talk about email titles at a later date as it’s a whole other topic.

Like many, I’m off on holiday shortly and so I’ve started compiling my holiday reading. Usually, I’m one for fiction on holiday, easy reading stories that I can get totally absorbed in.

But this year I’m also going to be taking a fascinating book that I’ve started reading, it’s called Atomic Habits by James Clear. The blurb on Amazon says:

People think that when you want to change your life, you need to think big. But world-renowned habits expert James Clear has discovered another way. He knows that real change comes from the compound effect of hundreds of small decisions: doing two push-ups a day, waking up five minutes early, or holding a single short phone call.

He calls them atomic habits.

One of the stories James tells in the book caught my eye …. It’s about creating visual cues to draw attention.

In this case, the cleaning staff at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam installed small stickers that looked like a fly near the centre of each urinal. Apparently, the stickers improved the aim of those using the urinals and significantly reduced ‘spillage’ around the urinals … and ultimately the stickers cut bathroom cleaning costs by 8% per year!


There are lessons we can all learn from this story … and apply to our world. And no, I’m not suggesting professional services firms need to apply fly stickers in their bathrooms!

A couple of other books I thought I would share with you if you were looking for some recommended reading (for chilling, for inspiration or just something different):

  • How to Win Friends and Influence People – Dale Carnegie And ‘old’ favourite -worth reading or re reading if you haven’t read it for a while. Lots of anecdotes and stories and loads of crucial takeaways we can all apply.

  • Shoe Dog – Phil Knight This is a memoir by the founder of Nike. Really interesting to hear how Nike came about and became what it is today. It’s a down to earth, interesting and insightful read. Again, lots to takeaway and apply.

  • And for beach/chill/holiday reading - anything by Wilbur Smith, Jeffrey Archer and Ken Follett.

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