You’ve heard about Pizza Day, Nerf gun fights in the hall, our Foolish fitness program, and the unlimited vacation policy, but allow me to talk to you about another unique aspect of Foolish culture: art. It may surprise you, but amongst our investors and techies we have a lot of artists here at The Fool. Fools have been known to organize impromptu jam sessions and knitting circles, paint, and teach art and photography classes. To top it off, we recently started an artist-in-residence program. Yes! You read that correctly.
The Fool welcomed the talented Amy Vachal as its inaugural artist to the program. With her guitar in one hand and paintbrush in the other, Amy spent four weeks performing, creating and collaborating with Fools on a variety of projects. She joined our members for a picnic, played a show with Fools at a local concert venue, and joined us for several Foolish get-togethers. Her presence got Fools talking about art and music and sparked a level of curiosity previously unseen.
Creativity is a combinational force. It draws people together like a magnet, strengthening bonds between co-workers and encouraging discussions that could lead to the next big idea. There’s a misconception that there’s a creativity gene, and you either have it or you don’t. That’s simply not true. Everyone is creative. It’s just a matter of drawing it out. It’s through opportunities like art classes, music, and the artist-in-residence program that Fools are encouraged to engage with not only the arts, but also with each other.
By enriching our lives with creative outlets, we grow as employees. Maria Popova, the author of Brain Pickings, wrote “This is the power of art: The power to transcend our own self-interest, our solipsistic zoom-lens on life, and relate to the world and each other with more integrity, more curiosity, more wholeheartedness.” It is great to talk with co-workers about that mosaic class we took last week, or Amy’s performance, or that fun rock show on Friday. It is our goal to educate, amuse, and enrich, and it’s through our creative spirit that we get to do just that.