Reflection on meaning

On Monday I spent the day at the inaugural meaning conference in Brighton. It could have been programmed for me.

Here is my summary of the day by numbers:

  • 71% of people are disengaged at work.
  • That means 7 out of 10 of your coworkers don’t care.
  • In the UK 35% of male workers actively hate their job.
  • On average corporate workers spend 3-4 hours a day emailing. It does not make them happy.
  • You can reduce your email volume by 80% in five weeks if you follow Lois Saurez’ approach.
  • In Ireland there are 200,000 empty newly built homes designed to sleep five people: housing for 1 million people.
  • The population of Ireland is 4.5 million.
  • The average house price in Ireland is 300,000€.
  • The average build cost is 60,000€.
  • 300,000€ is unaffordable (and mortgages inaccessible) for most first time buyers. There is no market and no need for these houses.
  • If these houses were revalued at their build cost one trillion euros would evaporate from the world economy.
  • Of course this money never really existed. But it’s loss would be extremely destabilising.
  • I have been to Ireland and seen those empty estates rotting.
  • 46% of businesses in Todmorden saw their business grow because a few enthusiasts planted vegetables in the street without asking permission.
  • 9% of the UK economy is in green tech
  • The hexayurt uses sheets 6m by 1.2m the standard industrial size of most cardboard and plastic sheets everywhere.
  • Hexayurt adoption is increasing exponentially.
  • The cost of building a permanent hexayurt is about $3000.
  • That could change the economics of building globally.
  • If you are 30 you are not old enough to have witnessed the power of exponential growth in anything.
  • The next five years will therefore impress you deeply.
  • There are five levels of good morning.
  • Happiness at work comes from getting results and having good relationships with coworkers.
  • Men who live in a positive romantic relationship live 6.5 years longer.
  • Success comes from happiness not he other way round.
  • VCs are realising 40% returns on investments in social businesses.
  • 80% of the negative environmental impact of jeans comes from washing them.
  • Huit Denim get people to wear their jeans for six months then give them back to be washed and sold as vintage denim.
  • 50% of the world’s population is urban.
  • 80% of the US population is urban.
  • Citrix now plans 6-7 seats per 10 employees because their people work flexibly.
  • The people of Rutland own their own telephone exchange. They boast the fastest broadband in the uk and they make a 7% return. They are in the middle of nowhere.
  • The Huffington post sold for $320m. Cashing in the work of others, they did not share their gains. Now they are getting sued.
  • Little things can have a big impact.
  • Saying thank you can make their day.
  • Say thank you.


  1. thank you for taking me. it was….awesome, NO! it was brilliant!! inspiring, insightful, encouraging. am proud to have ‘a person who does’ on my card….

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