Monday, October 31, 2016

Do You have a Fixer Upper Mindset?

This is a guest post by Blue Ridge Elementary Principal, Matthew Todd. If you're not following this guy, you should. 

Anyone else out there addicted to the show, Fixer Upper?

For those of you who are not, each show follows a similar routine...

1) A person or couple want to purchase a home in central Texas to fix up.
2) They choose one house from three options presented by Chip and Joanna Gaines.
3) Joanna gets plans together, has them approved by the person or couple, then Chip gets the crew together and starts the remodel.
4) There is usually one phone call made when a big problem emerges and more money needs to be spent.
5) Chip finishes the remodel, Joanna decorates the house.
6) There's a big reveal where the person or couple is shown the finished product (which they love).

Why am I bringing this up?

I was watching the show this weekend, and began thinking about how it compares to what we do.

1) Parents or guardians drop off their most prized possession that needs to be "fixed up" before moving on to the next grade.
2) We get together as a campus, develop a plan, then the grade level teams get together and being the process.
3) There's usually something that goes wrong during the course of the year, which requires a phone call home.

Seems surprisingly similar up to this point...

So, what do we need to do to ensure we get this type of response:

You're probably thinking of several things right now.  I'm going to keep it simple:

1) Stick to the plan.

2) Consistently communicate the good and bad.

We have a plan in place.  Stay with it...and try not to get frustrated.  Those of you who watch the show know that whenever Chip and Jo come across a problem with the blueprints, they make an adjustment and move on.  They don't scrap the whole project and start over.

They also talk to the homeowners during the process...even when it becomes apparent that to do the job right, more money is required.  You can't be afraid to have that tough conversation.  It pays off in the end.

What reaction are you building toward this school year?  

What is that one adjustment you may need to make in order to have that reaction be positive?

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