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Christmas 2013 On the Books: How Santa Got It Done

By Angela Stringfellow | Small Business

Another Christmas Eve is on the books for Santa Claus. Imagine the huge sigh of relief he must let out after dropping off the very last gift of the season – or does he? If Santa were a businessman, he’d have a lot of little details on his plate, and Christmas Eve most certainly wouldn’t be the start of a holiday break from the office. Anyone in the business world can learn a thing or two from the man in the red suit.

You see, Santa has to deliver gifts to about 615 billion children dispersed through about 205 billion homes around the world. That’s assuming an average of three children per family, based on the fact that about 32 percent of the world’s population celebrates the Christmas holiday.

Christmas Eve is the Result of a Year’s Worth of Hard Work

So Christmas Eve is really the culmination of a full year’s worth of the daily grind, for the Claus himself and his loyal staff of 307,500 elves, and those are just the elves who produce toys in the workshop. That doesn’t count the hot cocoa-making elves, naughty and nice list monitors, the flight team, reindeer caretakers and general North Pole staffers.

Santa’s in charge of a mighty team that pulls together an impressive annual operation based on dedication and teamwork. He must be one heck of a leader to pull off a feat like Christmas with flawless execution year after year.

Santa’s Elves are Skilled, Versatile Professionals

The elves aren’t just toy-crafters. To qualify to work in Santa’s executive workshop, they have to have a variety of skills including woodworking, computer science, locomotives, manufacturing, industrial engineering and doll making.

They also have to be efficient enough to produce one toy per hour – and with each elf working 2,000 hours a year, they can meet their quota of 615 billion gifts. But that’s with 100 percent dedication and no margin for error. This is accomplished only through Santa’s exceptional leadership skills and ability to foster complete dedication in his team.

Where the Magic Happens

Santa’s skilled team meeting the annual quota of 615 billion toys is one thing, but delivering all those gifts to 205 billion houses across the globe in a mere 31 hours is another. That’s where the magic happens. Or, rather, Einstein’s theory of relativity, which theorizes how events can occur at one time for one observer but at different times for another.

It’s simple: Santa makes use of the space-time continuum to deliver all those gifts over the course of a single night. But that doesn’t mean he’s not making use of the same slot in time more than once in a different space. For the billions of children receiving those gifts, it all happens overnight on Christmas Eve. Only after they’re nestled in their beds with visions of sugar plums dancing in their heads, that is.

Einstein’s theory of relativity enables Santa to visit more than 6.6 million homes per hour. That equals more than 110,000 houses each minute or more than 1,800 houses per second. Pretty impressive for a reindeer-powered sleigh that’s been around for centuries.

There’s one final magic secret left to be revealed – how does Santa pack 615 billion gifts on an ancient sleigh without weighing it down? Eight reindeer can’t possibly be enough to haul that kind of weight, magic or no magic. The obvious answer is, of course, his bag is actually a wormhole with a direct transmit from the workshop at the North Pole. So the elves are busily prepping each home’s stash of gifts, sending it instantaneously through the wormhole at the precise time and place Santa needs it. Genius.

That’s how Santa gets it done, in a nutshell. Another Christmas may be on the books, but the real work is just beginning for next year. Business leaders everywhere strive to emulate Santa’s commanding and captivating leadership style, and for good reason. He pulls of an impossible feat seamlessly every single year thanks to the loyalty and dedication of his elf squad. While you probably can’t take advantage of wormholes or the space-time continuum in your place of business, you can certainly follow the big man’s commitment to organization and productivity by working tirelessly, building a team of versatile professionals, and instilling values of dedication, loyalty and quality service.

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