A Lesson on Wants Versus Needs

Guess what, everyone? Pro cards were almost ready for sale to the public… but then something tragic happened. I had a few promo items produced and shared them with friends and early supporters, and anticipated opening the store for pre-orders then reinvesting the profit for more products in the future. Then things came to a halt.  Maybe you’ve seen them out in the wild on Twitter, or you attended a conference recently and have seen a select few with nice shiny class sized decks in hand. Want to know how you can get a signed set of shiny cards? Keep reading to the end for a fun contest to win a free set!

Problem: What is the Problem

What is the problem? 

Due to the Coronavirus, many factory workers in China cannot return to work, therefore, they cannot produce more of my product and I have no timeline on when work may resume.

Research: Who does the problem affect the most?

Who does the problem affect the most? 

Well, it affects the people in Wuhan and surrounding territories the most. This is a major health crisis that has cost the lives of several hundred people so far. They have a serious problem. I have an inconvenience.

Understand: How do you feel about it?

How do you feel about the problem? 

Mostly, shame. I feel ashamed that I was mostly focused on my card production versus the health and safety of thousands of people.

Solve: Who are some people that can help you solve it?

Solve: Who can help you solve it? 

My community of faith, which pushes me to be prayerful and compassionate towards others. This is primarily a call to seek the welfare of others, not to look at how it affects me on a very insignificant level. As for production needs, I have a team of friends who are helping me to consider alternatives, and the educators that have been committed to simply printing their own cards and being patient for professional cards to be made available.

Share: Story or Poem

Story to Share: A Teachable Moment

This problem is real. When I taught business for 9th through 12th graders the first chapter in introduction to business was an explanation of the difference between wants and needs. We would discuss how for instance, food is a real need, but a bag of Cheetos is simply a want. The same for hydration, water versus Gatorade. We even discussed different emotional needs and wants and compared them to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. All that to say, sometimes the distinction between the two is crystal clear, food versus a name brand or particular flavor and at other times are once our desires are so strong they can be confused as needs. So I bring all this up as a setup for a confession. I have a want that I have confused as a need. I really want everyone to have access to high quality professional Solve in Time!™  cards that they can purchase on an online store for org or school use. I have unfortunately looked at the situation in China and considered it as an inconvenience to my production needs. Did you see it? I just called a want a need. Here is the reality, there is a significant global crisis that is affecting the health of thousands of people, and in our capitalistic consumerist society in the West, people like myself see it as primarily a problem for production and profit. One is a real problem, the other is just a want. 

With students, this is the sort of real world problem that can be explored in great detail since it is hard to escape from our current events and news cycles, but the question is, how much are we integrating it into our standard courses of study? Most importantly, how are we looking at this real life scenario as an opportunity to explore deeper matters such as ethics and empathy? So there is my challenge for all of you core content teachers, encourage your students to look at real world events and notice the difference between real problems and versus wants. 

💡Teaching opportunity: Utilize your already communicated content around history and science and math and language to both communicate and calculate the cost of this crisis that is currently happening. Help identify different actions that can be taken to help the people who are in need, as well as help businesses and organizations consider alternative means of production. 

For those of you who are bummed to hear that the wait will be longer, remember that there are free to download and as soon as word is given around the resuming of production, pre-sales will go live. Thank you for your patience, and your commitment to solving real-world problems.

SOS: Want Your Cards?

At this time I have an extremely low supply of promotional items of professional grade quality that I would like to give to a class or organization that submits their best proposal to solving real-world problems. Share examples of your solutions to real-life global problems and tag @solveintime and use the hashtag #SolveiT. Winner will be announced by March 15th. The challenge is on, help #SolveiT!

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