People may remember more about us because of our reflection. We are not always aware of what backdrop upon we are projecting. We stumble on a puddle in the middle of a hiking trail, only to be captivated by the reflection of the moon, a mountain spire, or evergreen boughs creating an overhead canopy. The same happens in community narratives.
Volunteers, program partners, and neighbors offer testimonials that are highly contagious. Encounter a citizen who speaks glowingly about an enterprise, and we are intrigued. Travel to a new location, and we rely on the recommendations of others. Sometimes the information is accurate, or suggestions are based on old information. But their reflections start to shape our worldview. As a child residing outside of New York City, Time Square, the subway, and Central Park were all things to be avoided at night. I could continue to share those observations but those landmarks have changed in today’s New York City.
How do we set the people around us up for success? How do we make sure they possess an accurate worldview or at least the courtesy to encourage others to create their own experience? How do we make sure people make it to our front door without being misinformed or detoured by the neighbors?