Tag Archives: 2012january

C = D x V x F > R

If You Are Interested In Organizational Change, You’ll Be Interested In Richard Beckhard’s Famous Equation   C = D x V x F > R

Change = Dissatisfaction X Vision X First Steps > Resistance

C = Change 

??? What change do you want for yourself? 

D = Dissatisfaction with Current Situation 

??? On a scale of 1-10 (Low-High), how dissatisfied are you/others with the current situation. 

V = Vision of a Desired/Preferred Situation 

??? Describe in detail and sketch/diagram the preferred situation – the result you’re wanting to create.

F = First Steps Toward Vision

??? What 3 things need to happen immediately to create the preferred situation?




R = Resistance

??? What resistance might you anticipate?



??? On a scale of 1-10 (Low-High), how strong might the resistance be?

Richard Beckhard, Organizational Transitions, 2nd ed., Addison-Wesley, 1987 




To Dramatically Change Learning Outcomes: Dream and Create a Shared Vision and be willing to Commit and put forth Effort

A bright future for student learning isn’t just a dream!!  For effective and helpful leaders – having a clear vision or dream is an essential!  In a very simple sense – developing a shared dream or collectively embracing a clear vision – is the work of leadership.  “Shared dreams” or a “common vision” provide for positive action “moving toward the dream or vision”.  Obviously, moving “to” the desired future is better and more positive than moving “away” from the current situation or the past!

What are your big dreams for the learners you serve in the next two, ten, thirty or fifty years?  Yes, think long term and big! For starters, dream about them thriving as: thinkers, communicators, producers, builders, adaptors, collaborators and citizens.

Then add in your dreams for their access to, development of and use of technology – not because technology is an ‘end’ – more because technology may be, in part, a means to an end.

Additionally, dream about what learning centers (think here schools) might look and feel like – what would their cultures be like and why?  Think about how a school setting might be more effective for more kinds of learners.  Again dream big.  Create visions that can and will inspire others.

Talk with others.  Ask then to dream too.  Share your dreams with others and ask them to share theirs with you.  Build common dreams.  Uncover shared visions: to co-construct the ideal.

Start to work hard work of moving toward the shared vision.  Hard because the dream is dramatically important: Not hard because the vision is not shared and supported.  Work with a commitment to the shared vision and be willing to learn, grow, develop and change (adjust) along the way.

Whitney, Trosten-Bloom and Rader in their book Appreciative Leadership write that leadership: “is the relational capacity to mobilize creative potential and turn it into positive power – to set in motion positive ripples of confidence, energy, enthusiasm, and performance – to make a positive difference in the world”.

Yes!  We can create a world of greater learning for all students!  Yes!  We can build on our strengths, cooperate with others, contribute to the common good of a shared purpose and make a major difference for young people and their learning!


They are counting on us!!!

Martin Luther King Jr. Challenged Us to All Think Critically

Martin Luther King Jr. wrote in the Morehouse College newspaper The Marion Tiger in the January – February issue of 1947 about his concern for what it means to be truly educated.

Among his comments were these:

“To think incisively and to think for one’s self is very difficult. We are prone to let our mental life become invaded by legions of half truths, prejudices, and propaganda.”


“The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. But education which stops with efficiency may prove the greatest menace to society. The most dangerous criminal may be the man gifted with reason, but with no morals.”


“We must remember that intelligence is not enough.  Intelligence plus character–that is the goal of true education. The complete education gives one not only power of concentration, but worthy objectives upon which to concentrate.”

On this day and every day, I challenge educators and citizens to:

Acknowledge that thinking incisively for one’s self is difficult but should be the aim of education.

Work together as a society of educators, parents and citizens who values intensive and critical thinking in all people – young and old.

Strive with conviction to support the development of thinking that reflects and speaks to advancing the common good. This is an American value. 

We can benefit from being reminded of words and concepts set forth in the Declaration of Independence: which in part states: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”  And the Bill of Rights: which in part states: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

On this day we can all think about how thinking deeply together should be a practice we engage in more and more often.  And we can also think about serving the common good!


Image from My Heritage Bolg

Dads and Moms, Grandpas and Grandmas Consider Reading to the Young People in Your Life about Martin Luther King Jr.

Here are suggestions for three books that I suggest would be good read alouds about Martin Luther King for to the children in your life.

Obviously, these are not the only good ideas of books about Martin Luther King, Jr.  So, please find other too – or to read in place of these.

I was alive during the civil rights movement and the Martin Luther King, Jr. is real to me.  His strength, his focus, his humanity and his (our) dream is real to me. I am not sure that children growing up today necessarily understand the reason for Martin Luther King Day.  So, as a Dad or Mon Or Grandfather or Grandmother I suggest you intentionally focus on Martin Luther King, Jr. with those you love.

Here are some books that may be of value to you as you intentionally approach this important holiday.


. . . If You Lived at the Time of Martin Luther King 

By Ellen Levine and illustrated by Beth Peck

 A reviewer from the Amazon site had this to say about the book – “The question and answer format lends itself to reading aloud and then discussing topics that come up, like segregation, white supremacy, the Montgomery bus boycott, etc. I recently read part of this book to a fourth grade class who just had “segregation” as a vocabulary word. The students were quite attentive and asked some excellent questions. The title is a bit misleading in that some might view it as a biography of Dr. King. While many sections do draw upon personal events in Dr. King’s life, such as when he was a youngster riding in the car with his father and he heard a police officer call his dad “boy.” Or again, when he was young and he was told he could no longer play with his white friends. But as the title says, it’s really about if you lived at the “time” of Dr. King. Therefore, it’s an excellent introduction to many aspects of the Civil Rights movement. While the watercolor illustrations are an improvement over the black and white drawings in earlier editions of this “If You Lived At the Time Of” series, in this case I think the text could be more fully enhanced with actual photographs, especially since many of these illustrations are copied from well-known photographs. All in all, this is an excellent introduction to the Civil Rights Movement for upper-elementary students (and apparently for middle-school students according to another review here). This is one title that, in my opinion, should be in every elementary school in the nation.”


Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. By Diane Rappaport  and illustrated by Bryan Collier

The Publishers Weekly Review states: “This picture-book biography provides an ideal introduction to this leader and his works. Juxtaposing original text with quotes from King’s writing and speeches, Rappaport’s (Escape from Slavery) narrative offers a pastiche of scenes from King’s life, beginning with his childhood experience of seeing “White Only” signs sprinkled throughout his hometown. He questions his mother about their meaning, and she assures him, “You are as good as anyone.” Listening to his father preach, the boy asserts that “When I grow up, I’m going to get big words, too.” Rappaport also touches upon King’s role in the Montgomery bus strike that followed Rosa Park’s 1955 arrest for refusing to give up her seat to a white passenger and his subsequent efforts as a civil rights crusader. After briefly describing the circumstances of his death, the story concludes, quite abruptly, with the statement, “His big words are alive for us today.” The author relies on her subject’s own words, and his power, passion and pacifism shine through. Collier’s (Uptown) striking watercolor and cut paper collage art feature closely focused, lifelike images of King and other individuals against an inventive montage of patterns and textures. The portraits of King exude his spiritual strength and peaceful visage. In the background of some scenes are intricate recreations of stained glass windows, which, Collier explains in an introductory note, he interprets as a metaphor for King’s life. An elegant, understated pictorial biography.”


A Picture Book of Martin Luther King, Jr.  By David Adler and illustrated by Robert Casilla

The School Library Journal Review state this a bout the book – This beautifully illustrated , easy-to-read biography takes a look at the life, leadership, and ideals of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Adler examines King’s family background, leadership of the Montgomery bus boycott, and the 1963 march on Washington, D.C. By focusing primarily on these events, Adler provides young readers with enough basic information to form a well-rounded picture of King and his ideals. However, the outstanding feature of this book is the vivid watercolor illustrations, which are sure to capture readers’ attention. Casilla dramatically reveals the mood and feelings of the era. An error appears in the chronology section, where it states that King was married in Marion, Georgia instead of Marion, Alabama (some sources list Heiberger, Alabama, which is nearby). A fine introduction to King and the freedom movement, and one that would be equally useful for storyhour and discussion groups.”



Letting go of what is known – what people are used to – is difficult

Many people today will tell you they want the schools to be better, the natural resources to be protected, the opportunity for employment to be more open and that we appreciate and celebrate our citizens that have served in this country’s armed forces.  Yet, we see the schools looking very much like they have always looked.  Our natural resources are wrongly and often seen as basically unlimited.  Employment is not becoming more available – in many ways it is becoming more unstable.  And we quietly ‘go on‘ knowing (and not celebrating and or clearly openly appreciating the sacrifices of these citizens and their loved ones) that one percent of our population proudly and bravely serves the rest of us. These are just four of many things we might say need to change.


Change isn’t easy.  People often talk about how they want things to be better. Yet, there is an attraction to maintaining the status quo.  Even when the status quo is not good. That attraction to “not changing” may not be acknowledged by those that profess that “It is time for a change.”  Yet, letting go of what is known – what people are used to – is difficult.  Here are the thoughts of William Bridges, the author of Transitions – Making Sense of Life’s Changes: Strategies for Coping with the Difficult, Painful, and Confusing Times in Your Life (2004) page 11.


Why is letting go so difficult? This is a puzzling question, especially if we have been looking forward to a change. It is frightening to discover that some part of us is still holding on to what we used to be, for it makes us wonder whether the change was a bad idea. Can it be that the old thing was somehow (and in spite of everything we thought we knew) right for us in the new thing wrong?


So, as individuals we hesitate because we don’t know what we don’t know.  And we do know what we do know.  We want things to be better not to be worse.  So, we tend to hold onto the ‘known’.


We feel these unexpected losses because, to an extent that we seldom realize, we come to identify ourselves with the circumstances of our lives. Who we think we are is partly defined by our roles and relationships, those we like as well as those we don’t. But the bonds go deeper than that. Our whole way of being–the personal style that makes you recognizably “you” and me “me”–is developed with in an adjusted to fit a given life pattern. The very complaining that we do is part of that style. (page 12)


Human nature makes major change very difficult. 


Difficult but not impossible.  We have to be willing to push ourselves beyond our comfort zones.  Our children and grand children’s future is worth it.