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Make Saving Money a Game for Workers
"We just launched a program called Action Figures, in which we encourage our employees to pursue crazy-ass ideas," says Robert Stephens of Geek Squad, a Best Buy subsidiary based in Richfield, Minnesota. For example, "we posted a message on our company wiki saying something like, 'Hey, we have this idea for a new software app, but we are not pursuing it because the cheapest quote we could get is $50,000. Anyone think they can build it for $1,000?' We received several dozen responses in a couple of days and we've completed more than 10 prototypes as part of the program. It's not just about cutting costs, which this does, or producing better products, which this also does," Stephens says. "It's about encouraging people to aspire to things beyond their current timecard." Geek Squad had sales of $1 billion last year.