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A Compelling Why?

Last week, I wrote about the need for a leadership team to have a why. If a team does not know why it exists, it will inevitably flounder as different members of the team will be expecting different results. I stand by what I said last week, every team needs to know its why.

However, I want to go further this week--the why must be compelling. After last week’s blog, Jeff Greenfield, the middle school head at University School in Nashville, sent me this video.

Watch it--it is two minutes long and worth it. I’ll wait.

Now that you have watched it, you know that Michael Jr. claims that the second version of Amazing Grace is so much better because the singer understood the why behind his singing rather than just the what to sing. I agree and want to go further. Not only did the singer know the why, the why was compelling. The second time he sang, he was singing to help ease the pain of those who have suffered. That is compelling.

Those who believe the why of leadership teams should be to share information and keep leaders informed will never have great meetings. That why is clear but not compelling. It can be done via email. However, a team that meets to understand and collaboratively solve major issues facing the school has a compelling purpose. Those meetings will be meaningful. Your leadership team should be more than a think tank; it should be tackling major issues and measuring its progress in moving the school forward.


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