A group of people you don’t know are smiling at you. You do not know them. They do not share the same nationality. Yet they look vaguely familiar. Their side-stretched smiles and out-stretched hands look a little too far out. But it’s not like you would have been able to pose any better had you found yourself in the same situation. They seem unreasonably comfortable in their business formals. It clearly gives away their non-tropical location.
This could only mean one thing: You are face to face with yet another…stock photo.
A delicate sapling growing out of a little heap of mud secured in clasped palms…
Hands of various skin tones forming a circle of unity/teamwork/any group activity by grasping each other on the forearm…
Goldfish jumping out of their bowls!
Yes, and it may not necessarily be the first time you have come across this particular crop. Forgettable as they are, stock photos can be used again and again without much impact or re-call. A self perpetuating attempt of half-hearted self-defeating communication.
There is something mildly depressing about it. It says: ‘We don’t really care about you.’
‘This ain’t really that important, we are sorry you spent time on it.’
At some level, you identify with the need of such formalities. You are guilty yourself of using the sapling for the long term growth plan you made on short notice. You also used the poor goldfish for your ‘Key Take-outs from Blue Ocean Strategy’ presentation. Get it? Fish–Oceans—
Embarassed as one might feel, we here at SlavesINC are also faced with challenges of visual input. But we refrain from secretarial laziness. Here, for example, is a piece of original work:
A stressed/distressed employee is like a blank canvas. He really lends himself to the pharmaceutical/wellness industry. His disposition, as captured here could indicate any condition from depression to indigestion to erectile dysfunction!
So we urge you to resist stock photos. We would settle for a little granulation any day over ugly watermarks. And for God’s sake, have some dignity. If Goldfish had access to lawyers, they would sue for your last dime.