Order of the Eyeball

-By Tammy

I love to read and I love to learn. I’ve taken it a step further since becoming Administrator of Pacific Retina Care (sm). I read a lot of Macolm Gladwell and about business strategies and about people. I am essentially a happy person. I’ve always been that way. I try to see the good in people. I see the glass as half full. I definitely smile more than I frown. But I am trying to understand others. Why are some people so unhappy? Why do some people seem to be constantly searching for happiness? The American Association of Ophthalmic Executives (AAOE) eTalk email group formed a book club. A suggested book was The Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor. I read it about a year ago and have been in search of the perfect Order of the Eyeball pin.

Mr. Achor writes about seven positive principles that “fuel success and performance at work.” He is a compelling writer who uses concrete examples and descriptions. He made me laugh and cry. … He says that happiness is “the joy we feel striving after our potential.” Mr Achor even gives exercises to try to change your behavior and put you on your path to happiness. Despite its 317 pages, I found this book to be a fast and rewarding read.

One story about praising employees really struck me- the Order of the Elephant. A Danish car company has a two-foot-tall stuffed elephant that is given to fellow employees who do something “exemplary.” Not only is it the presentation of the elephant and the verbal acknowledgement of achievement, but there is on-going praise and hype. Every time a fellow employee notices the elephant on a desk, he/she will ask what they did to deserve the award and congratulate e person. I planned to find the perfect eyeball pin. I would make the first award of the Order of the Eyeball at a monthly staff meeting. And every time this staff member has a patient interaction it would be an opportunity to explain why they are wearing our very special pin. I would photo each staffer and blog about their above-and-beyond feat.

A year later and I have yet to find my perfect pin. I found one eyeball with wings online. But it looked very heavy and the pin was extremely thick. I didn’t want to have to buy new scrubs every time we awarded it too. So here we are at the annual American Academy of Ophthalmology and AAOE meeting. What better place to find unique art. I have searched high and low. Nada. I found a puny eyeball necklace, bought is as a backup, but it is not perfect. Today is our last day. My classes finished before Dr Tafoya’s. I decided to go shopping. I toured the French Quarter block by block. Decatur,… Chartres,… Royal… Lo and behold what do I find? It is not an eyeball but rather a colorful mask. It was created by a local artist and makes a statement. I am excited to award our first Order of the Eyeball at our next staff meeting. Stay tuned!

Note: all quoted material comes from Achor, Shawn. “The Happiness Advantage.” Crown Business, 2010-09-14. iBooks.

Order fo the Eyeball

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