Category: Culture

  • Unveiling the Canvas: Design and Creativity in 2024

    The year 2024 paints a vibrant picture for design and creativity. This dynamic interplay of imagination and craftsmanship is not just thriving, it’s transforming sectors, fostering cultural expression, and shaping the future of education and business. Let’s delve into the canvas of this exciting landscape, with a brushstroke of statistics and a splash of insightful…

  • The Problem With Pointing To Heroes

    When changing school culture, we’re often told to point to the heroes. Create examples of people who are doing what you wished “everyone” else would do. There’s a major problem here that’s not often cautioned about. Point to heores without first creating a cueing system will create divides – them vs us. It’s exclusionary by…

  • 9 Change Resistors That You Must Manage Successfully

    Like gravity, old ruts constantly pull us into their path. Also like gravity, only a bigger mass can free us from their pull. Question is, how do we create a bigger mass? Another question is, what are the masses that create ruts? Let’s start there – masses that act like gravity and resist change. Here…

  • Injustice and Oppression

    Maybe it’s time that schools stop teaching fairness. Maybe instead, it’s time to begin teaching this…

  • At a distance without norms

    In a building, we can walk through classrooms. In the hallways, we can be visible and hold conversations. At bus duty, we can high five and talk to our community. At a distance, we can’t. At least not yet. At a distance without norms, it’s hard to know how to do what we know we…

  • Empathy Speaks

    Actions do the talking. What words speak when you’re walking? Leading with empathy is not merely a feeling – it may not even be a feeling at all. Instead, empathy speaks. It speaks in actions. It speaks in conversations. It speaks in the climate that you craft.

  • Uncertainty

    Uncertainty – What is it? What can we do about it?

  • Actionable Ideas for Emotional Safety

    Emotional safety and classroom culture go hand in hand. We often say these are important, but what are some actionable ideas to increase emotional safety? That’s the question I asked Elisabeth Bostwick. And her answers are insightful. Listen here.

  • Maneuverability and Mandates

    How do you maintain maneuverability among all the mandates? I was sailing last night, and we almost hit a channel marker. It was just 20 yards in front of us, but we couldn’t see it until the last second. Luckily, the boat was nimble enough, and we evaded a horrible wreck. The momentum of the…

  • A Yes Culture

    While it’s good to be able to say no to good ideas to leave room for great ideas, it’s better to say yes. And to say yes again. Repeat yes until the right yes catches on. Then say no. Yes to innovation. No to pendulums. Yes to ideas. No to pendulums. Yes to creativity, risk-taking,…

  • Craft, Draft, Graft

    Craft – skill in carrying out one’s work. Draft – selecting a group of people and leading them somewhere. Graft – a form of political corruption, being the unscrupulous use of a politician’s authority for personal gain. Each of these deals with shaping culture. Your school culture depends on you knowing the difference.

  • High Performing Teams

    Every team has the potential to perform at high levels. Every team is stronger than any one individual. Likewise, every team is subject to the force of team entropy. The key difference lies in a team’s ability to resist the force of entropy. Some do it naturally and some do it intentionally. Either way, for…

  • Four Phases of Team Problem-Solving

    Team problem-solving can be divided into four distinct phases. The phases require different types of collaboration and thinking. Learning Together – Identify what we know, deciding what the problem is. Understanding the Problem – Coalescing information about the problem. Consensus about the solution. Evaluate and revise the solution. If teams lack protocols for problem-solving, it…

  • Back to School Tasks as Vehicles

    There’s so much to plan for as a school leader: master schedule, student schedules, hiring, handbooks, facility repairs, new student registration, instructional materials, and the list goes on. It’s easy to let tasks take center stage. However, what if tasks were thought of as vehicles? Yes, vehicles. What if instead of allowing the back to…

  • When Narratives Collide

    The topic of school culture has gained importance in the professional literature in the last decade. That’s a good trend. But we must always remember that no amount of imaging, branding, or social media activity can change the culture of a school. What is it then, that changes school culture in a positive way? Let’s…