A tiny Twitter conversation with Merlin Mann today about comics for my 5yo son took an unexpected turn: Superhero stereotypes. A German comic superhero must be orderly and full of Angst, right?

Everybody knows the stereotypical superhero of the sales department: Fast, clever, loud. — Amicable, happy, forgiving? Perfect fit for customer support.

In an ideal world, people are chosen for their jobs because of their superpowers. But every superhero has a dark side: Some aspects of his personality, hidden away from public view, which make the hero human. After all, no real superhero can be super without being human and vulnerable.

It’s no surprise that those traits come into play when the story needs an unexpected turnaround: A revelation of humanness shakes up the system and opens doors to new possibilities.

Sometimes, projects, teams or companies need to turn around. Then, it may be time to appreciate the dark side of your superheroes.