To be a genius, hire a genius.

Microsoft is pulling out the stops in trying to slow their loss of market share to Apple.

In addition to having Seinfeld star in some TV spots, this article refers to their challenge of one of Apple’s more genius-like moves, the addition of the Genius Bar.

The effort to make Windows seem more
user-friendly also includes planting “Windows gurus” to help users in
Best Buy and Circuit City stores.  They could help battle the loyalty boost Apple
gets from “Genius Bars” in its stores, Gillen says. “The Apple stores
have been pretty successful as a knowledge center that users can get
information from. Microsoft has had nothing on the consumer side.”

Computers are tricky to understand.  Tricky to operate.  And it’s even trickier to get someone to help you through your problem.

You know what else is tricky to understand?  New York City.  And the theater.  It would help to have some geniuses floating around inside Broadway theaters, wouldn’t it?

We’ve talked about theater concierges before (and The League’s “At Your Service” service is off and running).

But who else could provide some service with a smile to your audiences?

Your ushers.

They meet.  They greet.  They seat.

Ushers are one of the few staff members that interact with customers moments before and after your show.  It’s important that they have genius-like skills about your show, your city, and your other shows that they can recommend.

There are a few really nice ushers in Broadway theaters that obviously love the theater and aren’t showing people to their seats just because it’s a union job with benefits.

There are also a few crabby ones that couldn’t be worse customer service reps.

Union or not, the crabs need to go, so the next time you run into one, see the house manager at the theater and file a complaint.

There are thousands of theater-loving students, actors, and more who would love to work in a theater and get health insurance.

And it doesn’t take a genius to know that these geniuses would improve the audience’s experience.

Even Microsoft has figured it out.

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Ken created one of the first Broadway podcasts, recording over 250 episodes over 7 years. It features interviews with A-listers in the theater about how they “made it”, including 2 Pulitzer Prize Winners, 7 Academy Award Winners and 76 Tony Award winners. Notable guests include Pasek & Paul, Kenny Leon, Lynn Ahrens and more.