Team-Building In The Victorian Era


Team-Building In The Victorian Era


Whilst doing research on the history of team-building I came across a slew of articles from past eras which shed light on some rather dubious past attitudes towards team-building and human psychology in general. This first blog entry relates to a Victorian-era text I discovered in the arhives of Fotheringham House in Berkshire (England).

Please note we here at Remote Pals do not endorse or practice any of the following techniques. We simply post them here as a historic document.

Five Ways To Build Morale Amongst Your Peons Workers

By Lord Alfred Maybury-Twist
On This Date of November 1, 1886

1) Song!

Yes, a good Christian spiritual is great for the spirit! Studies show that if a group of miners sing “O Come, All Ye Faithful” once a day, they yield on average 12 Imperial Hands of coal extra per child per day… The Lord most certainly giveth!

2) Fighting Amongst Men

Studies show that if working-class men see a bloodlust once a day that they become more excitable, and consequently, more productive. Therefore, schedule a Boxinge Match early in the workday, say just before sunrise, between your two eldest workers. And none of this Queensbury Rules nonsense. Let them attain honour by fighting to the death.

Working class men love to watch fisticuffs

3) Eye contact Amongst Women.

Studies show that women (yes, women can work too! Chide me not for being so moderne!) who work in brick factories work 22% harder if they are occasionally allowed to make eye contact with another person!

The most splendid thing about this is that it is completely free. The eye contact can be combined with the grinding down of the granite that makes the bricks and not a second of productivity is lost!

For men who work in factories it is best to forbid eye contact, for they will only fight.

4) Water-closet breaks.

Yes, we were all raised to believe that a full bladder builds fortitude in the working poor but the latest in medical research indicates that relieving one’s self once a day can make a person more relaxed and therefore more productive. In this instance it might be to your advantage to treat a poor person well.

5) The Taking of Cocoaine

A tad exotic this one, but scientists on the continent have been experimenting with coca leaves from South America and have finally isolated an alkaloid chemical with medicinal properties. A Dr. Freud out of Vienna claims that this cocoaine causes:
Exhilaration and lasting euphoria, which in no way differs from the normal euphoria of the healthy person. You perceive an increase of self-control and possess more vitality and capacity for work.

Although I can’t see this catching on it can do no harm to give it a go, but first make sure to test it out on yourself and your friends first.

Dr. Freud, of Vienna, really loves this medicine