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And, yet, I still don’t know her name.

She greeted her guests by name and with a smile.

She knew their orders before they did.

She seemed to know ours, too.

And, yet, I still don’t know her name.

When she learned our names, she used them.

Every interaction was personal.

Regulars talked to us cause she used our name.

And, yet, I still don’t know her name.

We were part of the tribe because of her attention.

She was the catalyst for conversations across tables.

She is the reason for our soon-to-be return visit.

And, yet, I still don’t know her name.


Too often I forget to introduce myself, look at their name-tag, or thank them directly.

As we enter and exit each others lives through retail and service relationships, we can make it personal.

We can take a leap of faith and share of ourselves our most unique possession, our name.

I know Rosie the butcher at the grocery store. She helps me decide which cuts to use, how to prepare them, and portion sizes.

She mentors me. Coaches me. Supports my learning.

My students felt connected to their classroom because I had placed their name on a desk, locker, attendance chart, …

They felt personally engaged form the moment they walked in.

Teachers-in-transition can benefit from this name-game, as well.

Having their classroom door sign up prior to their arrival will help them feel welcomed.

Placing a handwritten card in an envelop with their name on it on top of the stack of curriculum materials shows them someone was thinking about them before they even walked in the building.

We all have a name.

We all have a need to be recognized.

When you stop by classrooms to wish your colleagues a wonderful start to the school year, be sure to use their name.

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