It never hurts to ask.

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I was reminded this week of a lesson I learned while getting my first undergrad degree: “It never hurts to ask for more when you are prepared to hear ‘no’ as the answer.”  The lesson was specifically in reference to asking for student discounts because most aren’t advertised.  I thought of this again because my wife, Heather,  and I took an overnight trip to Vancouver this week.  She went to the theatre with a friend while I went to UBC, where I’ll be starting my Masters of Educational Technology, and got my student card.

When we checked in to our room that we reserved on, Heather asked for a room high enough to see the new roof on BC place.  Not only did we get that, we got a complimentary upgrade  to a suite and a view that included BC Place and the Vancouver Public Library.  We were prepared to accept the room we had reserved, but were please with the result in asking for something more.

Image Source: Wendy Kohn

In the news this week there was a study that showed that “rude men” earned 18% higher wages and “rude women” earned 5% higher.  The thought is that these rude people demanded (not deserved) higher salaries, were persistent in asking for them and got what they asked for.

While I don’t condone this strategy, I do believe there is transference into schools.  In these times of budget cut-backs and layoffs, we need to know exactly what resources we need and want, be able to make a strong case for them and then be persistent in asking for them.  I’d add that success can be had without being rude, too.  There are more resources available than many of us know or are being told.  For example, I received a copy of MS Office Academic 2011 this week for $12 from my district’s work from home project.  I also heard that our international travel budget was far from used up.  I think I might have found a way to afford ISTE 2012 next year in San Diego!  So with a little exploring, we can find resources we weren’t aware of and with persistence, we might be able to get others we want and need.


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