Category Archives: Work

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G+ Open Office Hours

Goal To create a space where individuals can share and receive feedback on projects they are working on in the moment. Execution I’ll post to G+ a project that I’m working on at that very moment. I’m calling it G+ … Continue reading

I support local farmers, but no one is helping me share it

I’m proud to support two farmers’ markets.

Ash and I have gotten to know some of the farmers by name, and enjoy having fresh vegetables on the table each night. It’s definitely a community focused event.

But why isn’t Dover or Wentworth helping me share my love for the local farmers? Here is one simple idea that each market should be doing. NOTE: I’ve seen some general stickers around town, but nothing specific.

Stickers, yes stickers
Why? Because they are easy, get put any and everywhere and they are barrier free. Everyone knows what a sticker is, and what to do with it.

Partner with a local designer and tell them you want something that looks like this:

Once printed, give them away like crazy.

Why?
Exposure. The whole local, natural, food movement is big. Visiting a market is something most people can do. It’s easy, they can brag about it to their neighbors, and like the sticker says, it’s supporting local growers.

The people visiting the market love it. Help them share their story.

AND FOR GOODNESS SAKE Dover. Why the heck does Wentworth have a sign in the middle of town and you don’t? You’re ignoring the busiest intersection in town, no wonder why your market is so small.

Make your sign 2x as big as Wentworth's.

Coffee Shops – Share while you sip

Looking around the coffee shops I frequent, I see three things:

  1. People enjoying themselves
  2. Lots of computers and phones
  3. Most importantly lots of sitting, no rushing.

This got me thinking… How can coffee shops encourage their patrons to share their experience? Turn this simple visit into a sharing and communication opportunity.  

While sitting at a local shop, I sketched this:

Call to action
It tells people what we want them to do. “As you sip, share about us.” Depending on your taste it could be more direct. 

We know patrons have a great experience at our shop (this is not true for all shops), so let’s get them sharing those feelings with their friends online.

Tells them where to share
Putting actual icons tells people where to share. If you’ve got a great espresso artist and have a big flickr following, put the flickr logo. Only put the logos of sites where you are actively communicating.

Show love to your biggest fans
The 3rd part is the 2d code. The sky is the limit on the 2d code’s use, but a simple idea would be:

  • Have it share a message such as, “Tag your comment today with #2dcoffee for your chance to win a free ________. We pick a winner each week!” Hell, one winner? Coffee isn’t that expense, pick 10 winners!
  • Ask them to sign up for a newsletter. “Sign up for our monthly newsletter about everything coffee. Newsletters also include coupons for FREE coffee or new menu items. 

HOLD UP. Why the heck would you give away free stuff? Remember these are your biggest fans. These are the people spending time at your shop, willing to scan a code, and share their email. These few people want to have a closer connection with you. Who better than to try your new menu item out on, or just reward them?

You’re at your local coffee shop, you love it, would you share something with your friends? As a frequent customer, would you appreciate being rewarded?

Stop confusing communication with engagement

…it’s only hurting us, and our relationship with consumers. There is a clear difference between the word communicate and engage, so why are people using them as if they are the same?

Defining communicate and engage

Talking about one’s engagement strategy is great, but people need to understand that engagement means you are involving others and making meaningful connections with them. This in turn attracts others who begin participating and building their own meaningful connection with you and the community. Communication is just a small part of an engagement strategy.

What I hear most people sharing is a communications strategy. Important yes, but not nearly as cool as engagement.

Here’s what I propose. Let’s all assume we can communicate. It’s easy; answer questions, convey ideas, start conversation, etc… That’s now the price of admission. The conversation is now about how we are building meaningful relationships with our community. Again, yes you need to communicate, but how are we involving them? How are we elevating individuals to make connections?

The week of lasts – First Days

Today was the first day of camp. Anticipation and excitement for the summer oozed from our staff. They are ready.

I remember that feeling when I was part of the Day Camp team.

As a counselor, was I ready? Yes, I was! I trained for a week to learn skills on working with kids. I sang the songs, played the games, and somehow had unlimited energy. I was ready.

As a program director, was my programming good enough? That was a tough question. I knew what was successful before, I knew what the campers liked, I knew how to improve each activity… But, was it good enough? The bar was high and summer after summer we continued to raise it.

As director, was my team ready? They were, but I never slept the day before camp started. I was always too excited.

The week of many lasts

Being that this is my last week at camp, I thought I’d reflect on some memories that have made my time unforgettable and so special.

I got my first job at camp through a friend in the kitchen. It was March 2002. My responsibilities included washing pots, dishes, the floor, and helping to serve food. Come June I knew I wasn’t going to make it through the summer.

My supervisor suggested I talk with our Day Camp director. OK, I liked working with kids. That summer was the beginning of my tenure at Day Camp, which would eventually lead me to one day becoming director.

Here are a few moments I noticed today. No I haven’t teared up:

  • I introduced for the last time my very close friend who presents the week’s slideshows. The staff loved her work, as they should.
  • I took my last all staff photo. It went much smoother than years past.
  • I posted on Facebook for the last time the annual “When will the first camper arrive?” question.

I don’t want just a job. I want to change the world.

My current move to NH has brought much talk about jobs.

Where am I going to be working? Currently no where.
Does that bother me? Not as much as it does my parents.
When are you going to start looking? You don’t think I already have?

Here is something I just realized. I want a job that changes the world. I want my work to be great, and to somehow have a positive impact on the world. I’m talking culture, environment, civil rights, etc…

I’m not really sure where this idea is taking me, but I am aware that my soul finally agrees with something my head is saying.