Domino, a small action that triggers a series of other actions, has long held a fascination for people. The physics behind it are relatively straightforward: when you set up a domino, it is lifted against the force of gravity and then converts that potential energy into kinetic energy as it falls. The process causes the domino to knock over other dominoes, and so on.
In the business world, domino is a popular metaphor for high leverage activities that have a dramatic impact if they fail. A company exec might say, “We need to change our culture to embrace the Domino Effect.” In fact, it’s a great example of one of Domino’s core values: Champion Our Customers.
To do that, Domino’s had to look at its culture and how the company worked internally. They started by talking to employees. They asked them what they liked and disliked about the company and what needed to be changed. Then they rolled out new programs and processes to address those issues.
For Domino’s, that meant putting an emphasis on communication and making sure that the chain heard its employees. It also meant focusing on locations—putting stores near college campuses, for instance, to cater to their core customer base of young adults who wanted pizza quickly and easily.
The company also began experimenting with delivery. They even built a purpose-built Domino’s vehicle, with the goal of improving efficiency and creating a brand image. And they are incorporating the Domino Effect into their marketing: if a delivery driver doesn’t get to your house on time, that might prompt you to order online, and if you order online, you might be inclined to use their app to monitor your pizza’s progress as it heads out for delivery.
Another part of the Domino Effect is that a small victory right after getting out of bed in the morning can make you feel like a million bucks. This is why it’s so important to make your bed every day, even when you don’t feel like it. That small action might seem trivial, but if you can do it every day for four days in a row, you will have a chain reaction that leads to more good habits.
The word Domino has an interesting history, both the game and the name. It originally denoted a large hooded cape worn by a priest over his surplice. It later became a name for the black and white domino pieces, which might have reminded people of the garment. The term is believed to have originated in France around 1750. The same year, the game was introduced in Paris. Its popularity spread from there throughout Europe, with a variety of rules and variations. Today, domino is played by people of all ages and backgrounds, both at home and in professional venues such as domino competitions. Some people play domino for pure entertainment, watching a sequence of hundreds or thousands of dominoes carefully laid out in lines and angular patterns, and then toppled with the slightest nudge.