Jan 16 2012

Monday Video: Small Gestures Are Worth It

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Via Bernie DeKoven on Google+ comes this fabulous video about how the South African hamburger chain, Wimpys, rolled out their new Braille restaurant menus. Bernie has the talent for finding things that make me smile, but this one goes deeper as well.

I was tempted to use U2’s amazing video of their song about Martin Luther King (1984) as for my “Monday Video” as today is the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday here in the US. But I like the actions of the Wimpy video. Actions that speak, as they say, louder than words. Watch first:

 

The opening bit is “small gestures are worth it.” In all my years facilitating and leading, the story of the ACTION almost always comes back to small gestures. It may be big or small ideas that get us going, but the small gestures get us there.

My early geographical community leadership work found legs when I learned things like mirroring to better hear and understand what others were saying – usually with a small gesture that started with eye contact, leaning in to listen, and paraphrasing to work towards understanding. When I first started facilitating online around 1997, the simple act of welcoming and reciprocating opened up the magic of text based asynchronous conversation. As I returned to more face to face meeting facilitation, again the gestures of showing that I was listening, of helping make the act of “being heard, seen and loved” central to group interaction proved powerful. More powerful than any method or tool.

I’m sure you have stories of the power of small gestures. I’d love to read them in a comment or through a link. 😉

Sometimes small gestures take the tiniest amounts of thought and energy. Sometimes they are deep, profound gifts (like placing sesame seeds on a bun to spell in Braille.) What I know, is they are worth it. Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

One response so far

One Response to “Monday Video: Small Gestures Are Worth It”

  1. Mario Hargiantoon 29 Jan 2012 at 1:25 pm

    One day, in the morning, when my six month baby was sitting in her baby box, she looked at my eyes more sharply and longer than usual. “What does this looking mean?” I thought in my mind. Soon she moved her eyebrows up and down repetitively with her very “unique” face gesture and very attractive “unique” smile. I can’t stop laughing and being amazed for long then. Then I knew what that looking meant: she wanted to make a joke for me, she wanted my “top” attention, she was preparing to have a joke, and she was performing a wonderful “new skill” and was proving she could do it in front of me. What a wonderful and meaningful gesture!

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 United States
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 United States.
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