Epic Fails & Lightbulbs in Redesign
One of my first experiences as a consultant was for an elementary school redesign.
I collaborated with the administration on this big kick-off event to pump everybody up about redesigning the school.
Had my, “This is an amazing opportunity and we need your input” speech all prepared.
These were some of the things I heard people say within the first 10 minutes:
“What are we redesigning exactly?”
“Why are we doing this if they are going to do what they want anyway?”
“Does it matter what the building looks like if kids can’t be quiet in the halls?”
Epic failure on my part.
I realized I had made assumptions about the level of trust that existed within the building.
I had projected my response (excitement to create) onto this opportunity and assumed others would react in kind.
I had made it an event rather than a process.
We backed up.
We built consensus around values and beliefs as a school.
We talked how our individual strengths and areas for growth might impact the team.
We looked at the stories we were telling as a school.
We reflected on what was working and how we knew. Dug deep into what wasn't and pulled out opportunities for transformation.
Then we started to use the word “redesign” again.
Because now….everybody owned it.