A Note on the Future of Santa’s Workshop – McSweeney’s Internet Tendency
SUBJECT: A Note on the Future of Santa’s Workshop
Ho, ho, ho, North Pole Community,
Part of the key to our success every year is our ability to adapt to the times in which we live. The Workshop of today would have been almost unimaginable to us one hundred years ago. For starters, we switched from an artisanal model to a more efficient assembly line structure. Wooden train output tripled almost overnight as a result, and we finally achieved consistent shaping standards for our hoop-and-stick game. No longer would we find children trying to push a tin rectangle down the street. Not to mention, after eons of beseeching, we finally heard your requests, and now every workbench is outfitted with a cushioned stool. You’re very welcome.
It is only through flexibility and constant self-assessment can we continue on this road of success, and with that in mind, I am very excited to announce some new changes that you’ll see coming to the North Pole in the following year. First, we will be undergoing a significant redefinition of roles and a restructuring of internal organizations. Now, what does this mean? For many of you, this means that we will be empowering you to take on more of a leadership role in your duties as you transition from mainly building toys to managing vendor workflows of toy development.
Going forward, all toy production will move off-site to our new vendor partner, Assemblia. The elves will work closely with Assemblia in these first few weeks in order to train their off-site teams in toy construction best-practices. Following this transition, elves formerly in charge of toy creation will begin monitoring production calendars and tracking budgets as they shepherd our new partners through the toy construction process. I invite you to read the attached PDF for further details on this new workflow, and I ask you to join me in welcoming everyone at Assemblia to the North Pole team. I know we have a great relationship ahead of us.
Now, this transition may come as a surprise to a number of you, but we face a great many challenges in today’s modern world that require a change of course. I myself am no stranger to change. When Krampus was scaring the crap out of Bavarian children, I orchestrated a concerted campaign to soften our image. And after the Spanish Inquisition was established at the end of the 15th century—well, it goes without saying that there was an influx of new converts to account for, and boy did they need cheering up. These were not easy tasks by any means, and the measures we’re setting forth today may prove similarly difficult at times in the weeks and months ahead. However, if we wish to retain Santa-credulity rates at where they stand now, before we have a full-blown crisis on our hands, we need to take dramatic action.
I want to take this opportunity to assuage any fears that outsourcing our toy production will result in a loss of quality control. I have nothing but the utmost confidence in the ability of both our new partner, Assemblia, as well as in all of you, to continue to deliver the finest of Christmas presents to the children of the world, from the easily swallowable component pieces to the barely registered, shiny red bows.
In streamlining our internal structures, there will be some job losses, unfortunately. However, these losses do not come as a result of cutting back, but instead as a product of reinvestment in the future of our organization. We wish to refocus our resources toward market research and toy ideation, and the key to accomplishing that goal is to free up your schedules so you can spend less time assembling toys and more time out in the field. We need you to conduct focus groups with children at our mall outposts, so we can find out what our target audience wants and stay on the cutting edge of holiday cheer. We don’t want to fall behind Hanukkah in the Jack-in-the-Box gap.
I am also very pleased to announce our new project to design and create a Naughty-or-Nice digital database. Soon, we will be able to easily cross-reference a child’s actions from the previous year with those of years prior, and, thanks to metadata tagging, we will be able to gather demographic and geographical information on the prevalence of certain sins. Now, after years of speculation, we will be able to definitively prove whether Duluth, MN is the wet-willy capital of the world. This development has been a long time coming, and I am excited to see the North Pole finally enter the 21st century.
I do regret to bid farewell to my beloved reindeer. Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, and Blitzen, please know that your generosity and sacrifice will provide glue for countless toy dumptrucks. Well, not countless. About seven.
We have faced hard times before. We all remember that foggy Christmas eve back in ‘39. Many of us worried that the extreme weather conditions would prevent us from making our toy delivery on time. But thanks to clever, out-of-the-box thinking, we brought in Rudolph on a term-of-contract at the eleventh hour, and with his nose so bright, he successfully guided our sleigh that night. I am writing to tell you now, we shouted out with glee then, and we will shout out with glee again.
I look forward to further discussing these changes with all of you next month during our annual retreat in sunny Antarctica.
Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night,