Change can be a very difficult process. As leaders we are responsible for embracing, communicating and executing change, making sure it does not upset school and community culture. In The Six Secrets of Change: What the Best Leaders Do to Help Their Organizations Survive and Thrive, educational researcher and former dean of the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, Michael Fullan puts forward his deeply explored and impactful approaches to change.
Through his experiences as a leader who has brought about large-scale and substantial change in education reform, Michael has developed what he calls the six secrets of change. A series of insightful, actionable, and concisely communicable lessons, each of the six areas can really make the difference on how you as a leader initiate and deliver successful change.
Michael Fullan’s 6 Secrets of Change
1. Love Your Employees
Explore the importance of building the school by focusing on both the teachers and staff, and students and the community. The key is enabling staff to learn continuously. Evidence will be provided from successful business companies as well as from education.
2. Connect Peers with Purpose
Purposeful peer interaction within the school is crucial. Student learning and achievement increase substantially when teachers work in learning communities supported by school leaders who focus on improvement.
3. Capacity Building Prevails
The most effective strategies involve helping teachers and principals develop the instructional and management of change skills necessary for school improvement. The role of assessment for learning is essential in order to link data on learning to instructional practices that achieve student results.
4. Learning is the Work
Professional development (PD) in workshops and courses is only an input to continuous learning and precision in teaching. Successful growth itself is accomplished when the culture of the school supports day-to-day learning of teachers engaged in improving what they do in the classroom and school.
5. Transparency Rules
Ongoing data and access to seeing effective practices is necessary for success. It takes up the dilemmas of ‘deprivatizing practice’ in which it becomes normal and desirable for teachers to observe and be observed in teaching facilitated by coaches and mentors.
6. Systems Learn
Continuous learning depends on developing many leaders in the school in order to enhance continuity. It also depends on schools being confident in the face of complexity, and open to new ideas.
What are your leadership secrets for dealing with change? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below. And don’t forget to share the post for your chance to win a free copy of The Six Secrets of Change.
Feature image courtesy of Flickr, timsnell.