Why 6 bricks? LEGO Employee Gift Box - Six Core Value Bricks [Review]
So, first off, I couldn’t find the reason of why 6 bricks started, so if that’s what lured you here, time to stop reading. 😞 But I can speculate why it remained as such for this Employee Gift box. Go on for a quick interesting read.
From time to time, I like to collect one-off interesting items that are not LEGO set related. This is one time where it went pretty bad. Why so? In this case 915,103,765 reasons why - I ended up with the most expensive 6 red 2x4 bricks. Yeah, I paid almost USD $13 per brick. I thought I was buying THIS item. But it turned out to be missing, or less booklet, which was the main attraction for me. Not the bricks nor the box, but the contents of that little booklet. Well, at least you still get to enjoy a photo close-up of this unhappy acquisition.
Based on the Ninjabrick review its supposedly in celebration of the 50th Anniversary celebrations back in 2008. From the description in the ebay listing which I obtained this from, it says it was only given out to select employees and Ambassadors and supposed to represent the six-core values of The Lego Group.
So, that got me curious. 6 core values? How captivating! Indeed, why 6 bricks in the first place? Such an ‘odd’ number (well, it’s an even number) but out of the many numbers, 6 is just simply out of place. I typically find corporate values in odd numbers, 3, 5, 7 and so. But 6? Not entirely impossible, but… just unique.
So I began to hunt for these 6 core values. And I came across this Mission and Vision page. But wait. ONLY 5 VALUES? Someone decided to pop in another one along the the way?
Before we call out foul, indeed along the way, someone did add an additional value to the list. It appears here, and now embedded into the LEGO Brand Value (instead of Core values). The CARE or Caring part was added in.
So where did the 6-bricks come from? Or rather why 6-bricks? Here's a clue.
According to the documentary Brickumentary, Godtfried Kirk Christiansen was asked by the Patent Officer, “How many ways can you put 6 of these bricks together. Godtfried’s answer was that they’re still working on it, but at last count, it was at 102,981,500. We all know this number is now wrong thanks to Professor Soren Eilers who did the math and revealed after 30 of years in 2015 real number.
If you’re interested, here’s the full story behind that error. Written by the Professer himself. It’s quite a good read! The Professor mentions that the number was computed at LEGO in 1974 with references. The Brickumentary Documentary says it was during the patent filing, which was filed in 1958.
So, I think there’s some sort of a historical mish-mash and misunderstanding of facts. But one thing we can ascertain and be sure of is that the origin of the “WHY 6” is still unknown (to me at least) and not related to the Core or Company Values. The probably reason is likely that they extended the 5 core values into 6 because of the 6 bricks and added Care along the way (Awwww… LEGO cares about all of us!)
We tried hard to find the answers, but failed. But, hey, we’re still interested if you have the following information to quench my curiosity.
Do you have access to that booklet. “The Story of the LEGO Brick”. Could you drop us a note at (Facebook Messages)
Do you work in LEGO and understand WHY "6 bricks" and its origins?
Do you have background on why these little boxes were given out?
So many questions. So much mystery.
Hey, before you go, here’s what you came for.. photos of my most expensive bricks in my possession! Minifigure not included, only used to give scale and size because I couldn’t find a cat or a banana.
So, there you have it, somewhere during 2005-2008, an additional value around Caring for customers was added. And perhaps to date, there’s always the 6 bricks that will always remind all employees and ambassadors. And now through the 6 pieces of bricks, we have 915,103,765 more reasons to buy more LEGO.
This is what's printed on the inside cover of the box pictured above
The LEGO® Idea
The LEGO Idea is what our family enterprises are built on. It started with the LEGO name coming from LEg GOdt (Play Well) and developed into the LEGO System in Play. Our family believes that LEGO play is one of the best ways to play and learn.
With the LEGO bricks, we can build anyhing we can possibly imagine as if they were glued and yet they can easily be taken apart and reconfigured into a new idea. When we do this, we are not only creating, but also evaluating, reflecting and recreating to achieve new possibilities. We learn through play in a self-motivated and fun way.
The Kirk Kristiansen Family
The LEGO 6 Brand Values
Curiosity asks why? and imagines explanations or possibilities. Playfulness asks what if? and imagines how the ordinary becomes extraordinary, fantasy or fiction. Dreaming it is a first step towards doing it. Free play is how children develop their imagination – the foundation for creativity.
Creativity is the ability to come up with ideas and things that are new, surprising and valuable. Systematic creativity is a particular form of creativity that combines logic and reasoning with playfulness and imagination.
Fun is the happiness we experience when we are fully engaged in something (hard fun) that requires mastery, when our abilities are in balance with the challenge at hand and we are making progress towards a goal. Fun is being active together, the thrill of an adventure, the joyful enthusiasm of children and the delight in surprising both yourself and others in what you can do or create.
Learning is about being curious, experimenting and collaborating – expanding our thinking and doing (hands-on, minds-on), helping us develop new insights and new skills. We learn through play by putting things together, taking them apart, and putting them together in different ways, thereby creating new things, and developing new ways of thinking about ourselves, and the world.
Caring is about the desire to make a positive difference in the lives of children, for our partners, colleagues and the world we live in, and considering their perspective in everything we do. Doing that little extra, not because we have to – but because it feels right and because we care.
From a reputation for manufacturing excellence to becoming trusted by all – we believe in quality that speaks for itself and earns us the recommendation of all. For us quality means the challenge of continuous improvement to be the best play material, the best for children and their development and the best to our community and partners.
Wait? You've scrolled down all the way? You're still reading this? You deserve a fun fact!!
At the LEGO house, there's something known as a 6 Bricks Factory at the LEGO House Farewell Experience, where you can collect your free LEGO® 6 Bricks bag with freshly made LEGO bricks and your own, unique building instructions. UNIQUE! INDEED!
Out of the 915,103,765 combinations you'll get to take one home that's truly unique for you. So what's the fun fact? Are they not going to run out of unique bricks to give out? Of course not... at the current rate there's enough unique 6 brick combinations to last 3000 years based on the current estimate (by LEGO)