I really wish sometimes that U.S. Cellular was my mobile phone service provider. There are many reasons for me to admire this company; namely, that they are a Chicago company, giving jobs to Chicagoans, they used to have some really funny commercials with the always entertaining Joan Cusack, they sponsor the Chicago White Sox, and now I learn this, via Andrew Sullivan, from NPR. The company has a no e-mail on Friday rule.
That's right, a couple years ago, the company institute a ban on e-mails between employees on Fridays. The company says the move was made to get employees talking more and personally interacting more, thus leading to more innovation and collaboration at the workplace. Some people there balked at the idea at first, but some have made some astounding discoveries, such as people whom they had never met but had e-mailed regularly WORKED ON THE SAME FLOOR AS THEM! The move had an unintended consequence of people at the company actually talking to and getting to know fellow employees! Imagine that!
Now if only the company had a better reputation for phone reception both in and outside of the Chicago metropolitan area and if only they did have cooler phones. I'm with T-Mobile partly because I love the Motorola [another Chicago company!] cell phones, but hey, in a couple/few years time, Motorola may be no more and all cell reception may basically be about the same quality, so we'll see. Now if they'd only bring back Joan.