Hello everyone and welcome back to the blog. I wanted to write today about one of the experiences I had in my class today that inspired me to write this post. I have recently transferred from Madison College, a two-year school on the east side of Madison, to the University of Wisconsin – Madison, a large university located in downtown Madison. The difference between these two schools is very stark, especially when it comes to class sizes and accessibility to teachers. For example, my classes at Madison college were 30 students max, while my marketing class at UW-Madison has close to 800 students! At Madison College, I was easily able to make a good impression on professors by simply going up to them after class and having a conversation. Not only can I no longer do this because of COVID, but because many of my classes are massive.
There is; however, methods that I have discovered in building influence. Even if it takes a little more time than it would at a smaller school, smaller business, or smaller town. I was able to find a way today in one of my classes titled Human Resource Management. This class is slightly smaller and has two lecture sections of about sixty students. Typically, especially over zoom classes, teachers will stay for a couple minutes after class and answer questions if anyone has them. Usually, there is no one that stays after class to ask a question or make a comment about something that was mentioned in the lecture. If you want to make an impression with a teacher during COVID this is exactly where you should start. Begin to ask the professor a question after every class or make a comment about something he discussed and you will slowly start to make a good impression on the professor.
Today the professor introduced the idea of organizational culture and stated that language or jargon that a corporation uses among their employees is part of visible organizational culture; however, I stayed after class to argue that language is a part of both visible and hidden culture. I provided an example from my job at McDonalds. I mentioned that we use the acronym hand bag out (HBO) to emphasize handing out the bag of food to a customer as soon as possible. I also mentioned that we call the 1st window “back cash” and the grill “side 1” and “side 2”. It was obvious that I had made a good impression immideatley after I shared this information.
Not only did I share a good bit of information that will help the classmates listening to my comment, but I made a lasting impression on my professor which may help my future application to the business school and grades. Overall, it does not take much to build your credibility and influence. COVID-19 is no excuse for failing to make a positive impression.