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Team Work in Pike's Place Fish Market, Seattle - Choose Your Attitude!

Updated on May 2, 2016

Pike's Place Fish Market, Seattle & The Fish Philosophy

Pike's Place in Seattle is not just a fish market. It is a life-affirming experience. It is a place where Team Work is the most important part of the fishmonger's ethos - it's about turning up every day with a positive attitude.

It's not just salmon, lobster, cod and prawns, it's laughter, cheers, chatter and friendliness but most of all about being an important part of the team.

Every guy selling fish is only as good as the other guys in the market. They all rely on one another to get the job done - yes, it's about selling fish, but it's so much more than that.

Pike's Place prides itself on making the purchase of their fish something you never forget.

Even if you visit Pike's Place every week, it's usually not only because of the wonderful freshness of their produce but for the repartie of the guys who work there.

You certainly never forget seeing two guys hurl a huge marlin from one side of the market stall to the other - boy, those marlins are heavy, slippery fish and you're on the edge of your seat - will the marlin make it across the space! You can't look away.

Pike's Place is a business based on a unique kind of customer service - fun, fun, fun!

And the guys who work there know something for sure - they have to WANT to work in a certain way and if they can't bring the team building philosophy into everything they do - they might as well be doing something else.

Throw in some cheekiness, some loud shouting, some whooping and hollerin' and most of all a real, unabashed care for customers by everyone who works there and you have all of the magic ingredients to make a successful business.

'Fish' Philosophy
'Fish' Philosophy
Pike's Place signs - closing time Author: Alex Reynolds
Pike's Place signs - closing time Author: Alex Reynolds | Source

What Is The Fish Philosophy?

  • Be There - Be there for everyone with whom you come into contact. It's all about giving ALL of yourself to the people you meet while you are at work.
  • Play - Work is a serious business...isn't it? Not according to the Fish Philosophy. You need to 'play' some of the time, it's work but if it were serious all of the time, you would soon be worn down. So playing with your team mates and others is an important part of the Fish Philosophy.
  • Make Their Day - Let people know that they mattered today! Be thoughtful and kind to others. Let people walk away from meeting you at work and feel better for the experience.
  • Choose Your Attitude - Live from moment to moment and embrace every day and every working experience as a unique one. Wake up every day with the intent to be someone who can make a difference to the team and to the people you meet.

The Fish Philosophy

Justin prepares to catch a fish at Pike's Place Fish Market
Justin prepares to catch a fish at Pike's Place Fish Market | Source
People always seem to be smiling at work at Pike's Place Fish Market
People always seem to be smiling at work at Pike's Place Fish Market | Source

FISH! - It is All About Team Building

Pike Place Market isn't just about fish of course, it has been in Seattle since 1907 and like a proper market, it has cobblestones and is spread over an old area of the city.

It has an amazing selection of shops and stalls and prides itself on the quality of its produce and goods.

I became fascinated by the Fish Market when I was sent on a dreaded 'management team building' course and was shown the film 'Fish'.

It's all about the A word - ATTITUDE

The guys at Pike's Place Fish Market use a great one liner for their ethos

Do you 'choose your attitude' before work every day?

See results


Waking up every day with that idea, 'Choose your attitude' is the best way of approaching your work.

Some days are easier than others but I try to wake up every day and feel that yesterday is old news and today is a brand new page waiting to be written upon.

I watch the Fish video whenever I need a lift.

I hope you enjoy the spirit of what they are trying to do.

They start work at about 5:30 am every day. All day they work in really cold temperatures with wet, cold fish. They have many reasons to dislike their work - but they don't!

To be able to make people happy as part of you working day is a priceless gift!


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    • Jools99 profile imageAUTHOR

      Jools Hogg 

      7 years ago from North-East UK

      Rasta, Team work is about 'ethos', not all workplaces have an ethos (I have evidence of this sadly), the attitude here at Pike's is certainly one to admire. Thanks so much for your comment!

    • Jools99 profile imageAUTHOR

      Jools Hogg 

      7 years ago from North-East UK

      Daisy, thanks so much (as always) :o) for commenting, team work is a powerful thing!

    • rasta1 profile image

      Marvin Parke 

      7 years ago from Jamaica

      I love that phrase 'Team Work'. It is very hard to accomplished and is the unitary aspect of any organization. I like the attitude of this hub.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image

      Daisy Mariposa 

      7 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)


      It's nice to read about a fun place to work. Thanks for publishing this article.

    • Jools99 profile imageAUTHOR

      Jools Hogg 

      8 years ago from North-East UK

      iTommyGuns - my introduction to Fish! was also at a team building event for my last job. I found it really inspirational; sadly the others from my new workplace were less inspired and i met with mixed results. That said, if they had really let go of their preconceptions and embraced its ideas, they would have realised that this is a philosophy for work that really does work - every day is a new day and you come to that day with new eyes, ready for its challenges. Maybe that's half the problem whenit doesn't take hold - people don't play ball :o)

    • iTommyGuns profile image


      8 years ago from Blakeslee, PA

      Wow! This is so interesting that this was in my feed today. I was just discussing this last night with someone at work. I am a huge fan of the Fish! Philosophy. Not only have I read the books but been part of a successful company that used it. I'm a big believer that it is a personal life changer when used.

      I also met the author and went to a live presentation. It was the best presentation at a company event I ever attended.

    • Jools99 profile imageAUTHOR

      Jools Hogg 

      8 years ago from North-East UK

      Keith, yes, aren't they amazing? They throw a whole marlin across the market and everybody cheers :o) Many thanks, as always, for your comment, I appreciate it.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Wow, looks and sounds like a great time! Never heard of it before, but I'm definitely gonna try it when I visit Seattle soon!

    • Jools99 profile imageAUTHOR

      Jools Hogg 

      8 years ago from North-East UK

      Christy, those guys are amazing - it's a total mindset - FISH - attitude is everything and they turn up for work with the right attitude every day.

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 

      8 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Pikes Place Market looks fun! I had not heard of it before :)

    • Jools99 profile imageAUTHOR

      Jools Hogg 

      8 years ago from North-East UK

      Linda, many thanks for your comment - you'd be good at throwing marlin....

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 

      8 years ago from Orlando, FL

      This sounds like fun!!! I choose my own attitude daily, but to be with groups doing that would be very entertaining!


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