I asked what she'd learned after three weekends of solid elfing:
1. People need to know what you offer.
Her grotto was a little hidden and even I, looking for it, thought it was hard to find. She told her boss they needed a bigger sign, which they got the next weekend. Children piled in.
2. It's more fun being busy.
No matter how thrilling or dull a job, it is always more fun being busy than sitting around. If you have employees who aren't busy, find something for them to do. Down time breeds discontent.
3. Colleagues make or break the experience.
Her last day, Lily had a bad cold and didn't feel like working. I did not suggest she stay home; I just asked if she was up to it. She bridled, insisting that, however she felt, she couldn't let Ross--the Santa Claus--down. She'd instantly absorbed the fact that people in a business aren't loyal to the company but to each other.