WELCOME As a Work Search Tool

Excerpt from:
Part Seven: Pictures of People Finding Work
Copyright 2010. Roger Wright


Noel did not need the job. No matter what it paid or didn’t pay. He didn’t even need to work. Much less two jobs. Not at age 84.

He had always worked. Since leaving the Royal Air Force as a young man, he had built a successful practice as an architect. And he was still an architect. Still working. That never went away. Perhaps “semi-retired” but certainly not retired. He lived in a small green mountain village in Wales.

In his younger years, there were at least 5 local pubs in the area. Perhaps more. But now, with the changes in the business and the global recession, there was only one. Noel would stop in 2 or 3 times a week. Always on the same days

And Noel always liked to support the locals of course. Especially in hard times. He would take his seat at the bar, near the front door. He knew everyone. He knew the owner well. A hard man. Roughened and cynical by all his years behind the bar. He knew how close the owner was to shutting down. And that didn’t make him any more friendly with the customers either. But there was one thing Noel did not know.

Noel did not know that every time he was in the pub, business went up. Sometimes as high as 10%. But it always went up.

The owner had a feeling that Noel brought in business. Didn’t really know why. But he knew what his books were telling him. On the nights Noel was in the pub, business went up. So he decided he’d pay more attention to the twinkly eyed older gentleman. Find out his secret.

It didn’t take long. As he watched Noel hold forth from his seat at the bar, he realized that first and foremost, Noel almost never forgot a name. And when he did forget, he asked, and then used the person’s name. He ended up addressing everyone by name. It seemed like such a small thing. There had to be more.

As he kept his eye on Noel he realized that he was doing something else. Again, it was so small, one could miss it if one were not careful. Noel was welcoming everyone to walked in the place. Everyone! Even when the owner might have waved or said hello to a patron, Noel would burst out with “In case no one has told you yet, let me be the first to welcome you!”

Could that be it? Calling a person by name and then authentically welcoming them? That was all it took?

After a week of this, the owner was looking at his books one night and he realized it was true. Noel was increasing business in the pub! Astounding.

From that day on, Noel never paid for another drink. Something that of course bothered him at first. “What’s the occasion?” he’d ask. At first the owner would just smile and say “We’re glad you’re here, Noel.” But after one or two quizzical looks, the owner broke down and spilled the secret. “Noel, when you are here, I do better business.”

“Ah,” said Noel. “I am all for better business! I suppose we could do this. Just as long as the work never became a job!”

“Of course, of course,” said the owner. “All you have to do is be you.”

“Well, that happens to be my specialty!” smiled Noel as he raised his glass.

And as he did, some old friends came in the door, “Ah, Marnie and Keith! Welcome! Cold outside eh? Come in!”

2 Responses to “WELCOME As a Work Search Tool”

  1. Jeremiah Says:

    Sweet and vivid. Which has long been your specialty.

  2. Ted Schneider Says:

    Welcome as a work search tool goes well beyond – recognizing people, making a connection and truly welcoming them into your life when you have the opportunity to interact is all a part of good citizenship and decent human relations. It is especially important in a leadership position but it spans across all business, social and personal relationships. Most people don’t realize the power of acknowledging others and making them feel welcome.

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