I was at a Women in Educational Leadership the other day, and one of the sessions presented by a local superintendent was on culture. She shared four essentials for creating a positive culture. They are:
- Energize and Encourage People
- Foster Connected Relationships and Teams
- Provide Opportunities for People to Do Their Best Work
- Empower and Enable People to Learn and Grow
After she shared the categories, she had us walk around the room and get ideas from others as to ways in which to provide those essentials. That time to talk about our ideas, elaborate on them and create new ones together created our own positive culture. In those few moments with each other we were truly listening, engaging with each other and building a sense of connection.
It’s what’s missing on Twitter. Lately, Twitter seems to be filled with dime store platitudes lacking any depth. If I could get a dime for every time someone says relationships are the key… the key to student engagement, the key to school culture, the key to learning gaps… without explaining just how to develop those relationships, I could pay off my student loans!
So I’m sharing my notes from our walkabout and challenging everyone to add an item. Let’s not just talk relationships and culture. Let’s talk about the work we are/should/can do to create positive cultures that truly promote relationships.