• "The first step in having a courageous conversation is to stop having the one you are having now."

    – David Whyte

“The first step in having a courageous conversation is to stop having the one you are having now.”

– David Whyte

There are new leadership skills to be learned.

School leaders have been in pandemic driven boot camp since March 2020, discovering that under Covid conditions, some of their best skills are of little use. As unpredictability persists, leaders increasingly seek new ways of thinking about running schools and caring for their communities. It takes courage to see today’s challenges as bonafide opportunities and to believe that the adaptability, dedication and creativity the pandemic demands now can be the seeds of growing a stronger, value-centered school in the future.

Sharing the Responsibility

Today’s conditions require leadership at every level of responsibility in the school community. Positional power and authority still matter, yet distributed leadership is the model for moving forward. When people are authorized to problem solve and carry out solutions for the unique circumstances in their day-to-day work, they feel greater ownership in and responsibility for their contributions to the school as a whole.

Your new value proposition calls for adaptive leadership.

“People who practice what we call adaptive leadership do not make this mistake. Instead of hunkering down, they seize the opportunity of moments like the current one to hit the organization’s reset button. They use the turbulence of the present to build on and bring closure to the past. In the process, they change key rules of the game, reshape parts of the organization and redefine the work people do.”

Ronald Heifetz, Alexander Grashow, and Marty Linsky

Leadership in a (Permanent) Crisis, Harvard Business Review

“People who practice what we call adaptive leadership do not make this mistake. Instead of hunkering down, they seize the opportunity of moments like the current one to hit the organization’s reset button. They use the turbulence of the present to build on and bring closure to the past. In the process, they change key rules of the game, reshape parts of the organization and redefine the work people do.”

Ronald Heifetz, Alexander Grashow, and Marty Linsky

Leadership in a (Permanent) Crisis, Harvard Business Review

The longing to “get back to normal” is a natural human response to chaos, but the instinct to hunker down and ride out the storm is not an effective response. Re-Set School will help you bring adaptive leadership to this crisis so that you can:

  • Update and clarify your value proposition.

    What is the value for students attending your school during the Covid-19 pandemic? How will this new value proposition help the community in the short term and prepare the community for life after Covid-19?

  • Communicate with parents

    (Current and prospective) and other stakeholders about your value proposition. Create partnerships that leverage the realities of the pandemic while also bringing members of the community together.

  • Determine what to conserve and what to reinvent.

    The prolonged disruption of your educational model allows you to strategically preserve certain practices and let others go. What must you leave behind, even if valued, so your school can move forward?

  • Use empathy to help people contend with the loss of old ways of working.

    Jobs will change, roles may shift, legacy practices may die. These losses must be recognized and people’s grief must be honored.

  • Use empathy to help people cope with fumbling around as they learn a different way forward.

    Building new competencies makes everyone a beginner again and is particularly challenging for those who have worked hard to earn their seniority.

This is the opportunity to implement changes that may be long overdue, or that may be part of a dream you never thought feasible.

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