New Tools, New Tricks

“The only way to get good at solving problems is to solve them.” Seth Godin

When I first arrived at my current job in education, I was the youngest in my department (and I still am). I was charged with going to different schools to photograph at events, so the first thing I did (being mildly tech savvy with no sense of direction) was to Google the schools to get there.

Within the first few months, I traveled to one school only to find its doors boarded up and a fence around the location. The building was under construction. Nothing terribly new, we have buildings under renovation all the time. However, it caught me so off guard. Why would I look up the address, Google should just take me to where I wanted to go, right?

Number one, terrible reasoning on my part. Yet, when you think about it, even when you look up a location you Google the address. So, what happens when that address is wrong?

Well… you fix it. I set out on a mission to investigate how our Google locations were managed.

Now, in another life (back in 2012), I was a manager for multiple franchise locations and managed all their social media, websites, and Google Business pages. One of the first things I did was to verify each location, this way we could control the hours, respond to reviews, address customer issues, and moderate the sites.

When it came to my attention that we had no control over our pages, all I could think of was how many parents, caregivers, and foster parents did we have in our district who also Googled the schools and ended up in the wrong location? How many of these locations had the right phone number? Are the school’s hours listed?

If I ran into this issue, surely someone else had.

I made my case for the need to manage the locations. Manage the content that was being posted, accurate photos of the schools, manage phone numbers, manage addresses. The importance of making sure every school was up to date to ensure our families had the best information was a driving force.

The only way to get good at solving problems, is not only to solve them; but to find them, address them, and fix them before they become problems. I won’t say it’s a perfect system and we have every location accounted for. Yet, it’s a step in the right direction to assist in managing content and making sure our families and community have the most accurate and up-to-date information. Which I think is all we could ask for.