Welcome, welcome, welcome!

Early on in the DePaul orientation, we watched a video that ended with probably a minutes of various smiling faces saying “Welcome” or variations on that theme. Despite the knowledge that I was being wooed/played (I am in marketing, after all) it really did give me the warm fuzzies.

I believed – at that moment- that the sun was always shining, the temperature always welcoming and that every other DePaul student was going to go out of their way to welcome my son to their university. I know that the first two are downright lies … I’m hoping the third is only an overstatement.

Anyway … it made me think about the power in a proper and heartfelt welcome; a line of thought reopened when I read the paper this morning and read an article about a principal who, with staff and eighth graders, boarded school buses (I know it should be busses … but wordpress objects!)  and went out into their community to find and welcome incoming sixth graders.

Wow… that is pretty cool. Middle school is a bit of a pit. My experience was that it was the worst of the K12 years, filled with hormones, social horrors and the onset of more serious academics. I was so glad when I had both kids safely out of middle school and into high school, where they had more paths to choose from and less angsty drama.

I can only imagine that those sixth graders suddenly feel just a little bit better about the first day of school. They’ve already met someone, they’ve already got a connection, they’ve been welcomed.

Working for an etailer, it is more difficult to figure out how to be welcoming. We have a nice site. It is clean, functional and friendly – but I’m not sure how we get that greeter experience on the web. You know the greeters, right? They are the lucky employee posted at the story entrance whose job is to welcome you. Sometimes, it feels forced and is annoying, but occasionally you’ll find a greeter who was born to make people feel welcome. And it makes you smile. And want to stay in the store for a bit and bask in that ‘I feel so welcomed’ glow.

So blog readers –  welcome! Thanks for reading my rants, sharing my thoughts and just hanging out for a bit. You are also welcome to leave feedback, comments or suggestions for future rambles. Very welcome!

 

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