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What Caught My Eye – Watches That Don’t Tell Time

By Peter Weddle, CEO TAtech

Rubber ducky watches that don't tell time clock in TikTok views : NPR

It’s not the first time such a product has appeared on the market, but certainly it’s not your everyday fare to find a watch that’s specifically designed NOT to tell time. But, here it is. Meet the quack-quack watch. There are no hour and minute hands on its face, just a miniature pool with rubber duckies and “splashy bubbles.”

Fit for adults of any size, it comes with an adjustable yellow silicon band and “all the standard documents and paperwork signed and ready for you to adopt these duckies and assume full legal responsibility for their well-being.”

And, if you’re not into mellow bathtub memories, not to worry. There’s also a version for those who harken back to a more combustible childhood. It replaces the mini-pool of the quack-quack watch with a bed of lava and features two “red demon/devil duckies and a smokey volcano.”

The creator, a fellow by the name of Kevin Bertolero, says the goal is to connect his watch wearers to their “child self.” In his view, that’s a form of therapy that can help them deal with the stresses and strains of modern life.

Apparently, at least some counselors agree with him. As one put it, it’s good for people to connect with some "weird, customized happiness" that brings them back to the security and joy of an earlier time.

Bertolero is more specific. He says, “it's nice to have this little wrist reminder that there are cute and happy things around you in the world."

He may be on to something. Since announcing the product on TikTok, he’s sold several hundred of the watches – at $60 or more, depending on the version – and is on track to sell over a thousand before year’s end.

Okay, but what’s that got to do with talent acquisition?

A popular watch that doesn’t tell time is a counter-intuitive idea. It doesn’t make sense. Or, does it?

There is a logic to providing an empathetic response to a psycho-emotional need that exists among at least some of the population. And, that’s what makes it a potentially interesting recruitment strategy for an employer.

These are stressful times for many, maybe even most of those in the world of work. Despite all of the online chatter about the job market being transformed by a new “Golden Age of the Worker,” individual men and women report that they are more stressed, anxious and uncertain about the future than ever before. And, that includes “A level” performers as well as those with more modest track records.

I’m not sure reverting to their “child self” would provide any relief, but building out a place where they could reconnect with their “champion self” might well do the trick.

Think of it as the mirror image of the traditional career site employers publish online. Instead of trying to build a relationship with candidates through job opportunities and company culture updates – in other words, with a message focused on the employer – it would connect with potential candidates by focusing on them. It would give working men and women a career home that enables them to discover, recover and/or refurbish their passion, their inherent capacity for excellence.

It would subliminally convey the message that this company is a place that values your talent, whether or not you work here. It’s not only timely therapy, it’s the biggest turn-on there is.

Food for Thought,