Corey, the Minnesota Native Says...
is great place to live! We’ve got great schools, lots of cultural
attractions (theaters, museums, music, etc.), a large amount of
recreational options and very friendly people. And if you ever get lost
someone is always ready to tell you where you need to go (in a good
Jerilyn, the East Coast Transplant Says:
these are all great things. But on the other hand we have to contend
with this Minnesota Nice stuff that can drive us up a wall. Need some
practical tips to survive? These tips are sure to help.
Check out this video if you like moving things or just peruse the list below.
Tip 1: Be polite.
Say “excuse me” and “thank you” multiple times a day. Smile... a lot. Be as nice as you can whenever you can and kill ‘em with kindness.
Tip 2: Put a lid on it. Communicate as much as you can without anger seeping around the edges. Don’t be in the least bit scary.
Tip 3: Do hold people accountable and be firm, but again, do so without anger and irritation.
Tip 4: Find common ground as much as possible,
including in non-work related areas. Help them see you’re not a
martian from another planet, but someone with common interests, faith or
Tip 5: Help the person come to see the wisdom in your new idea or proposal by pointing out how it might serve their own self-interest or help others.
Tip 6: Avoid knee-jerk reactions that involve a lot of emotion. Walk away and cool down before re-engaging.
Tip 7: Try to be a little humble. Save your bragging for your friends and family back home.
Tip 8: Listen, listen, listen.
Let people finish their sentences before you start yours. Heck, if
you’re really good you’ll even allow for a short pause after they have
Tip 9: Look beneath the surface. Things
aren't always the way they seem (which is kind of an understatement with
Minnesota Nice). For example, because Minnesotans tend not to be very
direct they frequently express feelings as questions. “I wish I had
more time to complete this report” might actually mean, “I’m mad at you
because you didn’t give me enough time to complete this report.”
Tip 10: Make it safe for people to offer divergent thoughts and ideas in your meetings. If you’d like to hear more about ways to do this, please shoot us an email.
Tip 11: The most important tip: Find a few trustworthy natives and ask them for feedback.
Choose one or two things from this list and ask them to watch for when
you do, or don’t do, those things. Ask them to help you adjust to the
culture and check back with them frequently so they know you’re serious. Check out “Getting Minnesotans to Give you Feedback”. And if applicable, you can even send your native a copy of “Taming the East Coaster at Work.”
Tip 12: Learn to deal with passive-aggressive behavior. Resistance is futile. Check out, “8 Tips for Dealing with Your Passive-Aggressive Colleagues” to get you started.
There's still more! Get more tips and approaches from your fellow MN transplants!
Ways to keep in touch:
... We're now Tweeting @surviveMNnice - Check it out!
... You can also find us on Facebook where we post a mix of seriously helpful stuff with fun and lighthearted stuff related to MN Nice,
... Or just go right to the email list where we'll let you know about the things we do to help transplants better adjust.
© Jerilyn Veldof and Corey Bonnema