5. A Flood of Ideas

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When the manager got back to the office, he called a staff meeting right away. His employees trickled in, looking more than a little discouraged. One of them made a half-hearted joke about how she couldn’t wait for the next piece of bad news. Another said, “What, no shells this time?” There were a few chuckles at that, but the overall mood was pretty downtrodden. The manager noticed dark circles under many employees’ eyes.

At the last moment, Juanita bustled in with two big boxes of donuts, followed by her assistant, James, who carried a large electric coffeepot. The manager’s face lit up and so did almost everyone else’s. ...

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