Change is hard for schools and colleges. Most educational institutions are change-resistant, seeking to maintain the status quo and continue the culture as it stands. When there is a gap between the need for change and the desire for change, how do you create awareness for urgency on change in an organization?
Our experience tells us that data and sound research, not anecdote, is the best remedy. Most schools will continue on the same path of status quo unless the preconditions for change are present. Faculty cultures, however, respect data and the transparency of research and analysis. Research on the school in relationship with best practices and a lack of congruency with the marketplace is a great starting place for creating the proper urgency for change. All of our strategic planning efforts start with sound research. In fact, we have an entire internal research team dedicated to gathering internal and external data, marketplace circumstances, and SWOT analysis. This sets an even playing field and helps the school develop an internal rationale for needed change.
Creating awareness for needed change starts with good data and analysis. From that point, it becomes more evident that change is necessary. Our next installment will focus on the next steps, which is creating the proper change that matches the school or college context.