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Change on the Fly - 5/30/23

Situational service requires some advanced engagement skills.  It involves seeing each situation independent of any others, reading the moment, and changing on the fly to create the best possible customer experience and outcomes.  So, what are some keys to situational service?  Keep these guiding principles in mind: Start Open-minded: When Read more

Try an Empathy Exercise - 5/23/23

We often note that empathy is the most important quality to have in order to be great at customer service.  Empathy enables you to view people uniquely.  It helps the customer not to feel like just a number.  And the more we can view people as individuals, the better Read more

Time is of the Essence - 5/16/23

Time is precious.  There’s no time like the present.  Your time is valuable.  Timing is everything.  Children spell “love,” T-I-M-E. There are many great quotes that reference time.  And part of the reason is that time can be considered somewhat finite; at least within the day, it’s a limited resource.  Read more

Perpetuate Positivity with the Customer - 5/9/23

We’ve written many Tips on how to deal with various negative customer emotions.  Those emotions could reflect anger, fear of the unknown, upset, anxiety, or nervousness.  But instead of talking today about how to deal with their negative emotions, let’s talk about how to engender some positive emotions. We want Read more

Are You in a Position? - 5/2/23

Last week’s Tip compared Perspectives and Positions, and we noted that when people have a perspective on a given topic or issue, that’s often useful.  However, when people are more focused on their position, things can get testy. One topic we didn’t fully address last week was the definition of Read more

De-escalating Conflict in Customer Service - 4/25/23

Conflict can be very healthy and productive.  You and your customer are taking different perspectives, but if you have the same goal and you focus on what you’re trying to accomplish, the different perspectives may lead to an interesting approach or a mutually-beneficial solution. If the decision was up to Read more

Why a Home Run Swing Whiffs - 4/18/23

ACME Tree Service showed up at Nancy’s house to provide an estimate for trimming some trees.  The sales consultant looked at the trees and their proximity to the house, and he quickly wrote up a bid.  Heavy trimming on 9 trees.  Heavy price tag.  It was a quick conversation Read more

Communicate Crisply - 4/11/23

I try to make these tips around 300 words, but oftentimes I’m North of 400.  I work hard to pare down the words because I don’t want one or two core points being lost in a barrage of verbosity. Phrases like lost in a barrage of verbosity are the things Read more

Improve Co-worker Rapport to Improve the Customer Experience - 4/4/23

The movers were packing up the house.  It was a stressful time for Janine.  She was having to move her aging parents to a new city in a new State to help care for them.  The parents were leaving behind friends and a community where they’d lived for most Read more

G.A.B. – The Survey Guiding Principles - 3/28/23

You’re excited!  The company has okayed your conducting a survey, and you immediately think of a half dozen questions you want to ask every customer.  You document your questions, get input from others, and all of a sudden you have a Word document with 36 questions instead of 6.  Read more

Culture Transformation and K-12 Schools

Posted on in Business Advice, Education Please leave a comment

Blog 4-24-14Changing a culture in an organization of any size is a challenge – but it’s often a challenge that must be addressed if the organization wants to succeed. And in the world of K-12 school systems, the organization’s success is dependent on the student’s success, so culture change has an even higher calling – to improve the capabilities and likelihood of success of the children.

In the article Allentown School District proposes new high school as part of ‘transformation of our culture’, the school system is trying to create a new focus for many of its students through the development of a new high school – one that is local-industry focused and requires a great deal of partnering with local businesses. This is a new way of thinking, of building, of teaching, and of growing the talents and confidence of local youth.

When describing the overall culture transformation process, the Superintendent states “It will not take 10 days, or 10 weeks; it may even take 10 years before it’s all over because we’re talking about a fundamental, systematic change.” The article notes that “District officials hope this change will keep the district relevant and competitive with charters.” The School Board President notes that “This is a vision, and we all know that visions cost money.”

A way to summarize these key points is to say that competition can be a driver of change. Change requires a vision, that new vision often requires a new culture to enable it to succeed. And to succeed in the long-term, sometimes it takes a longer-term view, time, and money.

This is not a negative about change and competition. In the public school world, it’s become a reality. And to those K-12 organizations wanting to succeed long-term, doing as has always been done is a recipe for a slow, painful demise.

Look to the future with a vision about how to improve the capabilities and likelihood of success for children; then determine the culture that’s required to begin moving toward that vision.

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