This past weekend employees of my radio station, WOMC, scattered around metro Detroit to man kettles for The Salvation Army. I don't know about you, but when I leave a store I'm A) frequently in a hurry B) usually distracted and C) don't want to be judged so, unless I have specifically planned to donate and have some change or singles at the ready I find myself ducking and running past the Red Kettle and its attendant. I can't afford to donate every single time I walk by a kettle and I'd feel like an idiot saying "I donated yesterday.' But here's what I learned.
1. There's no judging. I could tell when people were avoiding looking at me and let me assure you, there's no need. Sure it's nice when people stop and donate but a smile or even eye contact is just as good.
2. You can tell the Bell Ringer that you've already donated without looking like an idiot. I loved it when people told me; it gave me the chance to say "Thanks for your support. Happy Holidays!"
3. You get lots of different reactions to the question "Would you like a kiss?" Yes, I was handing out Hershey's Kisses. I'm not above bribing people. And yes I did hand out real pecks on the cheek to anyone who was brave enough to ask for one.