Movies are a prime source of phrases and iconic sayings that become part of everyday vocabulary. One of the more famous lines popularized by a movie is: “Houston, we have a problem” as relayed by astronaut Jim Lovell (Tom Hanks) in Apollo 13.

AMC Theatres capitalized on that familiar saying and used it as the sign on the restroom stall that was not functioning. Instead of a generic “out of order” notice posted on the door, they hung a “Houston we have a problem” notice.

The sign accomplished the same thing to stop patrons from entering, but it did so in a way that was clever and very on-brand.

Think about the language that is germane to your industry or organization. How can you incorporate some of it into your signage, wayfinding or art? Branded signs are small things, but all brands are a compilation of a thousand decisions that make a unique whole. Be intentional about what is written on yours.

About the Author leadership dots by dr. beth triplett

Dr. beth triplett is the owner of leadership dots, offering coaching, training and consulting for new supervisors. She also shares daily lessons on her leadershipdots blog. Her work is based on the leadership dots philosophy that change happens through the intentional connecting of small steps in the short term to the big picture in the long term.

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