Increasing #efficiency doesn't mean decreasing people. Rather, it means stepping up #collaboration. #edchat #edu #ASCD14 #QuoteADay #Day76
Being collaborative is a key to success. We can't truly learn in a vacuum; we need contact with others to make knowledge truly meaningful. Working together means solving problems as a team, as multiple heads are always better than one.
If you pay attention to the educational landscape today, you know that much of what is discussed is all about increasing "efficiency." In a world focused on reducing expenses and increasing output, the "more from less" strategy is constantly being applied everywhere in education.
What does that mean? Often it means cutting staff while attempting to keep program offerings/structures the same; usually a fruitless enterprise.
Not surprisingly, we're going about this the wrong way. If we want to increase efficiency, we can't worry about people numbers. Instead, we have to worry about people power. The more opportunities for collaboration we have, the more likely we are to grow as learners and leaders. That growth makes us more effective educators, and our effectiveness can be tightly tied to our efficiency (the more you know, the more you're able to do, right?).
So how can we use the power of collaboration to reduce "true expenses?"
By trusting staff members to work together and solve problems quicker than one person could do him or herself. This is a stretch, I know. When staff is reduced, people can "see" the dollar value being reduced.
But time is money, literally. If we can fix problems quicker and innovate more fully when we work together, then we're saving our organizations money over the long haul. Moving forward with this type of vision requires a leadership-style that won't quit, and getting anyone to agree to "wait" in the education world is very difficult.
Still, imagine the capital that can be built, and the learning that can take place if we focused on increasing efficiency by increasing the power of people.