For just a moment, I thought I was hallucinating. Surely to goodness there couldn’t really be a mix of Stomp and … high school football game happening in front of my apartment??
It turns out that it was a labor dispute going on outside the Safeway my apartment is built on top of. No real surprise there, it’s called the Soviet Safeway for a reason.*
What did throw me was the cheers they used.
“Everywhere we go-o… (Everywhere we go-o!) People want to know-oh… (People want to know-oh!) Who we arreeee. (Who we areeee!) So we tell them… (So we tell them!)
We are the union! (We are the union!) The mighty mighty union! (Mighty mighty union!)”
If you’re not familiar with sports cheers, that’s a pretty common thing people do in high school sports, except instead of saying that they’re the Union, they say they’re the Tigers, or the, I don’t know, Warriors. Whatever their mascot thing is.
(Don’t be intimidated by my sports expertise. Clearly I’m a huge fan.)
Here’s the thing. I’m 100% for worker’s rights.
I absolutely believe in fair pay, and good working conditions. I’m sure Safeway probably is dicking them over in some way, and I want them to get the things they need to work safely and well.
And I was still cringing.
Here’s the lesson: you can present the best, most right, truest message in the world. And if you do it in a way that makes you look goofy, people are gonna take what you’re saying to be goofy.
This is why I’m such a hardass about getting the details right in all the work Bolt puts out.
And this is why, if you don’t have a natural touch for this kind of thing yourself, it’s important that you hire someone to help you.
Because your words truly are your work.
You can be the best in the world at what you do, but if you can’t talk to other people about it in a way that makes them care, it doesn’t matter.
Other people don’t live in your head. They don’t work in your business. They don’t see the effects of your work firsthand. It’s not that they don’t want to care about you––it’s that they just don’t know how to unless you show them. And how do you do that?
Through your words.
And I can promise you, you really, really don’t want the words you’re giving them to be “Ain’t no party like a union party cause a union party don’t stop.”
* We call it the Soviet Safeway, because it has food … mostly. They apparently struggle with ordering, because there’s always only a 65% chance that they’ll have food in. Oh, and the electricity cuts out so often they have little signs to put up on the freezer doors asking you not to open them so as not to let the cold air out. Makes life interesting.