I had the opportunity this week to experience a show I have been eager to see for over a year. When the music for Dear Evan Hansen was first released I was hooked. As you might imagine I was pumped to be able to finally see it live in Atlanta.
The show was extremely compelling – but not for the reasons you might imagine. Yes it has amazing actors and really well written music; but the truth is there are hundreds of shows out there which have those basic elements. To use a poker term – those are just table stakes.
The reason Dear Evan Hansen is so compelling is it offers 3 key elements that create a compelling experience. Luckily these 3 elements are not constrained to theaters or concert halls. They can become a dynamic part of any organization because they are experienced and expressed through relational connections. Any time you interact with another person, whether it be in a business transaction or through serving them on a Sunday, you have the ability to generate a compelling experience.
Here are the 3 Elements of a Compelling Experience:
- You See What I See – when you see what I see we have formed a relational bond. This relational connection is formed simply on the basis of common experience. This might seem overly simple – but consider how many deep relationships find their original source in shared experiences such as growing up on the same street or going to the same school or church.
- You Know What I Know – building on shared experiences we find added depth of connection when we interact with those who see and understand the world as we do. To look at a person or group of people and realize they know the same things you know and think the same way you think is to begin experiencing an intellectual bond.
- You Feel What I Feel – one of the greatest bond between two people occurs when they share common attitude and emotions in regard to common experiences. We have deep trust, care and affection for those who feel as we feel. When you discover that a person or group of people feel what you feel there is something inside of you that declares, “You get me.”
Almost every musical on Broadway is written and performed by some of the best people in the world at their craft. With that level of investment you would think every musical would be compelling. The truth is many are good enough, but few are truly compelling.
The same is true when people walk into a church. There are thousands of churches who know how to offer a good sermon and engaging music. To create a truly compelling experience help your volunteers and staff engage in such a way that guests experience a people who see what they see, know what they know and feel as they feel.