Have you ever thought of creating a help desk like those seen at computer stores?
We just held our first Genius Bar event at Denver Public School’s central office and I want to share the experience with you.
The idea of this event was suggested to me by a leader in our district. I recruited “geniuses” from our Ed Tech and IT departments as well as some other software experts that I knew in our building. Using a Google doc I had folks signup and list their expertise. I used this list to also generate table signs to go on the tables. We’re fortunate to have a large open space on the top floor of our building, also known as the 14er. There are long bar tables that I thought would be perfect for our purposes.
To promote the event I created very simple fliers that I posted throughout our building-in stairwells and on every bulletin board. Here’s what the flier looked like:
On the day of the event, the experts found their places at the bar and awaited people needing help For people needing help they were greeted by two people on my team-Jessica and Taiya-who directed them to the appropriate expert. If the expert was already busy then they put their name on a post it note next to the expert so everyone was aware of the queue. Here are some images of our greeters and experts:
Reflecting on the Event
Enthusiasm was high among all participants and the “geniuses” did a lot of peer sharing when not helping folks. I wish we had more folks dropping by in need of help. We’ll try some different times and maybe different locations. Everyone definitely wants this event to continue. We may not need as many “geniuses”. This first time I had 13! I’m also going to try some different communication channels. The fliers by themselves may not be enough. The trouble with email is that I have no way of just targeting people in the central office building and I don’t want other staff members and teachers who are at other locations to feel left out. One last thought-we may have to create another name. I have a feeling that “genius bar” is trademarked by Apple. I welcome your suggestions!