ESSENTIAL QUESTION: Explain and give examples to argue why the following statement is true or false: “Get the right people on your team, and get the wrong ones off.”
I think the scenario determines whether this statement is true an false. I think the type of leadership present can really make or break the statement. When I first read the statement my mind automatically told me this was true, but that seemed to be too easy of an answer. My initial thought was, why would you want someone on your team if they don't agree with you? In my opinion that would just make my life more difficult.
Through reading this week I was reminded how those with differing opinions may help to bring diversity. According to Fullan (2001), if we only invest in those who are like us "they become more like-minded and more unlike the rest of the organization while missing valuable new clues about the future. By supporting the like-minded, leaders trade off early smoothness for later grief. If you include and value naysayers, noise in the early stages will yield later, greater implementation." At first things will go well but later they might not. Fullan goes on to also give an example of how this plays out in 2 PLC's in one school. One is great while the other has made all of the teachers very negative toward their career. "Collaborative cultures, which by definition have close relationships, are indeed powerful, but unless they are focusing on the right things they may end up being powerfully wrong" (Fullan, 2001).
After more digging and more reading this thought from Fullan (2001) stuck out, "most people want to be part of their organization; they want to know the organization's purpose; they want to make a difference". This was crucial for me in realizing that maybe this statement could be false. In all of the articles I came across the key factor was the leadership. If there was good leadership most were in support of what was going on around them. The leadership has the potential to make the school a positive environment or a negative environment. So you could win over the support of your naysayers by making sure you keep a positive school climate. This takes a lot of emotional intelligence on the part of the leader. "In a toxic school culture and climate, learning by all will not take place effectively, and what is learned may be sustainably negative and harmful. When a school is a positive place to be, people are happy to be there, do their best, and make their best better" (Elias, 2015).
You cannot keep everyone happy all the time, but you could win them back. "In a culture of change, emotions frequently run high. And when they do, they often represent differences of opinion. People express doubts or reservations and sometimes outright opposition to new directions" (Fullan, 2001). Keenan (2017) talks about how at his school this happened a lot to start with. Eventually they created norms, and this has made all of the difference. "The norms have helped create a safe space for school staff to take healthy risks and describe difficulties they are having freely" (Keenan, 2017). With these norms teachers have jumped back on board and it is all related to the way the leadership responded.
However, I still have to go back to thinking that sometimes this statement could be true. All of the reading supported false, but what happens when you can't win someone over or you can't agree? In some cases you may just want to stick with those who support you and politely part ways with the people who don't support you.
Elias, M. J. (2015, March 05). You Need an Elevator Pitch About School Culture and Climate. Retrieved April 01, 2017, from https://www.edutopia.org/blog/you-need-elevator-pitch-about-school-culture-and-climate-maurice-elias
Fullan, M. (2001). Chapter Four. Relationships, Relationships, Relationships. In Leading in a culture of change. (pp. 51-76) Retrieved from http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED467449.pdf
Keenan, B. (2017, March 07). The Tough Work of Improving School Culture. Retrieved April 01, 2017, from https://www.edutopia.org/article/tough-work-improving-school-culture-brendan-keenan