From Godin’s Tribe Building: Surprise Them

Item #21: Go Somewhere Different – e.g. Surprise the heck out of them!

This leaped off the page at me for learning centers.  I love my learning center, and one of the things I love about it is its unpredictability.  What with our student population facing transportation and childcare barriers, our entirely unpaid teaching staff, and our geographic propensity for extreme weather conditions (last Thursday it was -10 outside), there’s a whole lot of unpredictability.  Unfortunately, many of the surprises end up being challenges: absences of people or materials; having planning take longer than you thought (doesn’t it always?);  feeling more tired than you thought you would.

It’s kind of a forehead-smacker that a coordinator can (partially) take control by making a few surprises, and making them positive ones.  A card, a balloon, a tasty treat, a “congratulations” for x number of hours spent at the learning center.  Duh – but I’m not sure it would’ve occurred to me in those terms.  Thanks, Seth!

I guess the catch is that lack of time tends to be one of the challenging surprises that comes up repeatedly for me, and contriving positive surprises takes time.  Yet another matter of achieving a delicate balance.

How do you balance the need to control/fix unpleasant surprises and to create pleasant ones?

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s