Sunday, September 20, 2015

Make Someone's Day or How Dress Shopping Inspired This Leadership Message

Recently I had to go dress shopping for a family wedding and was not quite in desperation mode, but had the pressure to appear as the "cool Auntie from Florida", not one of the "'Golden Girls". Not being at my preferred weight and size added to the dread of the whole experience. Of course my husband was forbidden to go with me. So armed with a huge dose of self esteem conversation, I went to the Mall on Saturday. I went to the big department store where in the past (aka 2 sizes ago) I had great success and much to choose from. Immediately I knew I needed help...where were the dresses for me? You know, conservative, sleeves, flattering and not costing an arm and a leg. And then Rebecca came along.

To make a long story short, and after camping out in the dressing room for longer than I ever have, I came out with a beautiful dress, $43 (down from $118), and confidence was restored. No Blanche or Rose here! But it was the salesgirl, Rebecca, who helped me, reassured me, found more "little black shrugs to cover my hefty arms, but really, ma'am, you don't need them" than I knew existed, convinced me that no, I didn't need to go to a higher size, that dress looks great, and then smiled that "That's the one" when I came out in dress #53, which had been my favorite all along...I just appreciated her sweet affirmation of my choice. ""You're much too hard on yourself" she would say. "Just go and have fun", and all the other choice salesgirl-speak phrases that she may have used to everyone else in there, but I felt were just for me. She was genuine and made me feel she would have brought every dress on the floor so I could find the right one!

So do you have a "Rebecca" in your professional life? Someone who encourages, reassures, helps you find just the right resource, lets you know that everything is going to turn out great and that you'll just have to relax and have fun? Someone who's patient with your occasional self-deprecating comments, yet doesn't let you stay there? I hope you do! I hope someone is there to help you be your best each and every day. We have that in our Media Specialist PLC's and other configurations/PLN's/Mentor-Newbie pairings/etc. that our District Media Supervisors have set up and encouraged. And how about the flipside? Are you a "Rebecca" to someone else? Don't just let your bucket be filled to overflowing without letting it spill out to benefit someone else. Someone else, not just another Media Specialist, perhaps a teacher at your school, needs to be encouraged, guided, praised, lifted up. They need to find just the right resource to help them shine. They need to know someone's on their side and available. It might just be a Snickers bar in their mailbox to say you're thinking of them...but it will make their day.

The wedding hasn't taken place yet, I'll let you know how it turned out. But I know for sure that I'll be rocking that dress thanks to the help of that salesgirl who did a little more than just her job. She went beyond Salesgirl 101 and made the day of this not-there-yet Golden Girl who is still a very cool Auntie from Florida. Go be a blessing to someone today and Stay Grounded!