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Woo the Crew

Last month, I was sitting in the auditorium of my 8th grader’s school.  Other parents were watching the singing and dancing.  I, on the other hand, had my eye trained on the sets and props.

You see, my daughter was part of the stage crew.

At her school, the kids must apply (and even pay an activity fee) for the honor of working backstage. And they do it with glee.

Although I didn’t say it out loud, I found myself wondering:

  • What would make 13 year-old kids (not exactly the most selfless age) give up precious free time to move furniture, hand out mustaches, and make other people look good?
  • Why were the kids dressed in black and hidden back stage as happy as the ones all made up singing and dancing in costume?
  • Why were they as excited and nervous on opening night as the actors?

So, I did some research.

While picking kids up, dropping them off, and serving snacks, I conducted a scientific study.  And here’s what I learned: These kids were doing it because they loved being a part of something special.  (Researcher’s note: I included in this category any survey subject whose reason included being invited to the cast party.)

Every business has its stage crew.

The customer service reps. The telephone marketers. The technicians.  Purchasing.  The list goes on.  These are the people who keep the business running, helping the ‘on-stage talent’ hit their cues and perform under the hot lights of the marketplace.

Do most ‘crews’ in the workplace do their work with glee?  Are they as invested when the curtain rises or falls as the actor, singers and dancers in the organization?  Do they feel like they are part of something special?

Unfortunately, the answer is too frequently ‘no’.

Who’s responsible?  More importantly, who can do something about it?

Let’s talk about this.  Who’s your crew… and what you are doing to woo them?

Image by hsingy


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