Meet Roger!

It took me a while before Roger was allowed to meet you. You see, I meet Roger too. Roger is a frog, a red-eyed tree frog, to be specific. It might be surprising but he speaks fluent English and German. That is quite handy because he works with me as my assistant.

“That is peculiar!” you may be thinking. Well, yes. Roger is actually not a REAL frog. He is a Beanie Baby tree frog. Nonetheless, he has a lot of character!

Mind you, not everyone gets to meet Roger. He comes out only when he feels welcome and needed. His hands have three fingers. He uses them to give “high threes” to coaching clients I am working with. Celebrating success is important after all. Even more remarkable wins might be celebrated with a “high 6” (both front hands). The celebration can even soar to a “high 14” (that’s both hands and feet – the feet have four toes).

While celebrating is fun, Roger also has some other habits. Occasionally, he bursts into the conversation I’m having with a client. He makes a cheeky comment or asks a pesky question. Or, he will scold me for having asked a difficult question. I’m telling you, Roger can be quite a pain! LOL.

Now, you need to take this with a grain of salt. Roger and I get along very well. My clients (those who get to see him) actually like him! Sometimes they even ask for him. They want the “high 3″s. They also find it helpful when we inject a bit of humor as we are looking at something that might be a bit tough to evaluate.

Other times, Roger sits quite patiently next to me on my desk. His big red eyes are telling me he is listening and he is ready to hop in when needed. Or at least when HE thinks he is needed. Cheeky Roger.

But all that joking aside: Why on earth would a Ph.D. chemist who became a certified executive coach and invented Brilliance Extraction™ stoop to involve a stuffed frog in her work? This work is serious and the payoff is enormous. Why risk that someone might see Roger and think anything less?

Maybe because it works. “Definitely!” chimes in Roger. Roger that!

By the way, I didn’t model anyone when I started doing this. It was more an accident – and a result of my childhood during which my parents, my sister, and I pretended our dogs could speak in human language. Weird maybe. But it can be funny!

But think of “Fish!” training. It is aimed at creating happy employees in the workplace. They use a stuffed fish called “Pete, the Perch.”

What’s the Lesson?

We think and learn better when we give a little room to humor even if it is a bit silly? We lighten up enough to tackle things that might be hard to come to grips with otherwise? Or we have a little fun just because it is…well, fun!

I’m Curious

What do you do to make your work more fun and engaging?


  1. Robert Donnell on at

    Roger is pretty cool!

    • Stephie Althouse on at

      Thank you! He is. He is saying Hi to you!

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