Networking and Visioning

This week I have met with a couple of people regarding becoming agents for Stacey College. It is interesting the transition from sitting at home dreaming and creating on the computer – to then speak to people face to face about the college. I enjoyed the beauty of the Korean welcome. I was introduced to a Korean through another Korean friend. As he spoke on my behalf to introduce me I watched a stranger’s face go from a slightly curious blankness to an open and smiling hello. I appreciated the formality of the personal introduction – that allowed a total stranger to suddenly become part of my sphere. This is one part of my job I look forward to doing more of. I really love meeting new people, hearing their stories and getting to know them.

My business partner tells me that promotion is a ‘networking people contact sport’. Following this metaphor I would say that my protective safety gear is my preparation and hard work, my confidence and self not being tied to this business venture, and a willingness to be flexible. Scoring goals would come from getting great people to be part of the team at Stacey College. The contact – the bumps, bruises, and broken bones – would be conflict, disappointment, disagreements, rudeness, communication problems. My defense – don’t take it personally. Remember that I am doing this from scratch, everything I do won’t be perfect, but the fact that I am getting it done is an achievement. I don’t particularly like being bumped and bruised, though I do enjoy the competition and a sense of achievement.

I realise that I still have some work to do in terms of ‘visioning’ the college. This became very aware to me as I struggle to write the ‘About us’ section in the website. You will notice that it is still blank – that’s because my draft version is still sitting waiting to be improved. This next week I am going to focus on creating a vision for what I want Stacey College to be. Offering English courses – yes, but much more – the vision, the goals, the personality and ‘vibe’ of the place. I think it’s important to try and articulate all this even if it changes later on. It is important for the selling of the college, but also guiding us in the premises we choose, the teachers we hire, the course books we use, the marketing methods we employ. I look forward to making my vague ideas into a concrete vision this coming week.