This time last year, I met two people clearly thriving on this sort of work. One was a “volunteer,” in the middle of helping an event with a thousand moving parts to go smoothly. The other does it full time. For each of them, you could feel just how much their chosen work fit.
I caught mid-stream magic being performed by Geo Geller at the #140edu Conference, a gathering of wired educators that was held last summer at the 92nd Street Y in New York. A minister with nearly all portfolios, Geo was tracking down speakers, adjusting the lights and air, helping with taxis and luggage, coordinating with the Y’s staff, and untangling technology, that is, managing by wandering around. It was hot and I was decompressing from my time up, so for me it was some jokes, Geos’ finding me the T-shirt that came with the gig, and finally, just watching him work.
I met Dave “Pics” Bradley the night before the conference. Dave’s a hall monitor at a high school in Toronto. His day begins with tweets about the weather or the day’s schedule and ends with pictures he took of the school day in motion.
In his daily walkabouts, Dave sees first hand what teachers and administrators miss in the capillary action between classes and scheduled appointments: plots foiled, celebrations captured, bullies interrupted. Or it’s a friendly word on a lonely day from a friendly guy with a big hat and a camera. How essential is the job he’s doing? Check out what the Toronto Star thinks, along with Dave’s interview & video clip.
There can be a lot of satisfaction in work that makes everything else that’s going on…work. Here’s to Geo, Dave and all the other magicians who are actually doing it.
It’s a position that every workplace should want.
It’s a hat you might consider trying on.