Do you believe in the power of an idea?
Do you like to figure out what makes people do what they do?
Do you like to think there is a better way to do something?
Can you make people rally around you and accomplish something?
Are you brave enough to share an idea that you have that you think you people might laugh at?
"Go to college, be creative, keep learning every day, work hard, NEVER BE AFRAID TO BE WRONG"
Today was career day and I was fortunate enough to have Tom Leibhardt from marketing at Sherwin Williams. Tom was a bit nervous about talking marketing to seventh graders. We emailed back and fourth for a few days and I was able to get a good handle on what he wanted the students to understand about marketing. The questions above were used by Tom to get the kids thinking about a career in marketing (or any career for that matter).. He also spoke about Steven Jobs and the now famous "1984" Apple commercial. Tom did a great job expressing to the students that it isn't just about being intelligent, it's being creative with your abilities.
As I sat and listened to Tom's presentation I really began to see how what Garth and I do in the classroom really is helping prepare students for their future. Creativity, not being afraid to take a risk, working with people and changing the world are concepts we hope our students understand when they leave our classrooms. Tom helped express just how important those concepts are in the "real-world". One reason that Tom enjoys his job is because everyday is different. If we think about the current structure of education; most schools want students doing the same thing, at the same time, everyday. It was great for the students to have a non-teacher express the idea that you can have an amazing career that includes variety. Career day is definitely a great program created by our guidance department. Every year our school exposes seventh graders to a myriad of career paths. Every year the speakers express the importance of thinking outside the box and being passionate about what you do.
Below is a recorded version of Tom's presentation and his PowerPoint. He had to do 5 presentations (in a row) and each was a bit different. The one idea that was always mentioned, "don't be afraid to be wrong".
**Since Tom mentions his employer, it is important to say that the views expressed on this site and in this blog are not neccessarily the views of Tom or Sherwin Williams. Although I must say the success of Sherwin Williams must be due in part because of passionate, intelligent and creative people like Tom.