Well, here we are again closing in on the end of the first quarter of a school year and deep in the grips of things that always seem to take our valuable time. What are these things? Paperwork, government guidelines, red tape, laggards, etc. Requirements, necessary evils, challenges, dips whatever you want to call them.
Seth Godin shares the following about his ideas in the book The Dip:
“Every new project (or job, or hobby, or company) starts out exciting and fun. Then it gets harder and less fun, until it hits a low point-really hard, and not much fun at all.
And then you find yourself asking if the goal is even worth the hassle. Maybe you’re in a Dip-a temporary setback that will get better if you keep pushing. But maybe it’s really a Cul-de-Sac, which will never get better, no matter how hard you try.
What really sets superstars apart from everyone else is the ability to escape dead ends quickly, while staying focused and motivated when it really counts.
Winners quit fast, quit often, and quit without guilt-until they commit to beating the right Dip for the right reasons. In fact, winners seek out the Dip. They realize that the bigger the barrier, the bigger the reward for getting past it. If you can become number one in your niche, you’ll get more than your fair share of profits, glory, and long-term security.
Losers, on the other hand, fall into two basic traps. Either they fail to stick out the Dip-they get to the moment of truth and then give up-or they never even find the right Dip to conquer.”
David Jakes provided great insight on “The Dip” last year and here is a review with his education spin:
“So my question to all of you is this. Have you thought about the approaching dip? Because it’s coming…
To the teachers out there: What will you do to work through the dip? What can you do to anticipate the factors that will contribute to the dip? What alliances do you need to form or develop that can help to mitigate the dip? How must you alter what you do to provide the time necessary to nurture, develop and extend the things you have learned so that they become a seamless part of what you do? How will your past practice, behaviors, and methodologies contribute to the onset of the dip? How will you avoid these? How will you lean into and push your way through the dip to be the best?
To the administrators out there: What will you do to help teachers through the dip? Do you know what they learned over the summer? Have you learned the same things? What do you have in place to support teachers on those new initiatives? Have you built organizational readiness to support teachers, or will you be a contributing factor to the influence of the dip? In September, will you think of November, when the initial energy of the start of school is a distant memory? Are you planning to help teachers maintain the energy? Are you providing the dollars, the infrastructure, and the leadership to help your school become the best? Teachers can only do so much; administrators have the ability to open the door to more.
And the technology people out there: will you supply that lost or forgotten password ten times, and do so with a smile? Will you answer that email in a timely fashion because behind every email is a whole bunch of kids that need to know. Can you get that site unblocked for that teacher that wants to do more and take kids to the next level?
Look at all the questions. Look at all the potential excuses. It’s easy to see why the dip occurs, and why it’s difficult to get things changed in education.
Start leaning now.”
Again, I’m leaning, I’m leaning!