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Sample Situation: During its ACSI accreditation, it becomes clear that School A has never had a consistent system for evaluating its support staff. Some supervisors do a good job evaluating the employees they supervise while others either do not do annual evaluations or just conduct “feel-good” sessions which don’t give honest feedback. When the school loses a wrongful termination suit because the evaluations were sporadic and contradicted the reasons for the termination, it hires MfM to design an evaluation system that would give honest feedback to employees but not burden the supervisors.
Sample Situation: School B feels its compensation for development staff is below the market and they are experiencing high turnover in the department as a result. Salaries are high compared to others in the school yet the department’s performance has been lackluster. The school is willing to pay more for higher performance, but knows there are ethical issues with incentive-based pay for development personnel.
Solution: Jack Peterson visits the school to meet with administrative leadership about the design of the program. He sets up a time-line for preparing appropriate job descriptions, formulating and approving the evaluation policy and training supervisors in the new system. Through 1 half-day visit to the school and 4 hours of teleconferencing and coordination with the president’s assistant the new evaluation system is finalized and adopted by the school. Jack provides an additional half day for supervisor training and the school has the option to have additional coaching via teleconference.
Solution: MfM is hired to craft a bonus program that will incentivise productive effort aligned with the school’s strategic goals. Jack Peterson meets with school leadership for half a day to determine their goals and discuss options. He analyzes current salaries compared to prevailing development compensation rates, interviews key personnel remotely for 3 hours, and prepares an incentive program customized for the school’s specific needs and objectives. He provides an additional 2 hours of distance training on the new program to the development director and the president.
Sample Situation: The president and board chair of School C find that it suffers from a silo mentality in which employees don’t seem to see the big picture, but simply focus on the needs of their departments. As a result there is mistrust between different parts of the school. The business office feels the department heads don’t need to spend the money they do, teachers complain that the weekly mass takes too much time from classroom instruction and campus ministry wonders why the school puts so much energy into development. As a result it has been difficult to get enough support to make progress in any area. Having read the book, Managing for Mission, the president and chair decide to hire MfM to conduct leadership training about the four models—apostolic, pedagogical, community and business.
Solution: Jack Peterson has a 1.5 hour meeting with the president and chair to discuss what they need. He then outlines a program consisting of a 1 day on-site meeting with administrators and other key faculty and staff in the morning and then making a presentation to selected administrators about the four models in the afternoon. This is followed by reading assignments and exercises to apply the principles to their school and a series of 4 webinars to continue to explore, identify and develop leadership and management skills. In addition, Jack provides 2 – 1.5 hour skill builder follow-ups later in the year. The school has the option of hiring Jack for additional coaching, either on-site or by teleconference. It can also contract for a second year of the leadership development program.
Sample Situation: School X has an excellent president and principal. For a number of reasons, however, friction has developed between them, and the school is starting to fragment along the lines of loyalty to one or the other, including members of the board. Both have tried to resolve the issue but the conversations have become so emotionally charged that now they just avoid each other. The president doesn’t see a way forward other than terminating the principal, yet he knows she is a capable administrator and firing her will pit him against a large segment of the faculty. He suggests to the board chair that the school contract with MfM to bring in an objective party who would help resolve the conflict.
Solution: Jack Peterson spends a day at the school meeting with each individually, as well as the board chair. He then leads a conversation between the two, drawing on scriptural principles of servant-leadership which leads them to find the places of convergence where they might be able to build common cause. He then provides them 2 hours of coaching on how they can heal the fracturing within the community.
Sample Situation: School Y is an order-sponsored Catholic school with an excellent faculty, but only three members of the order are currently working in the school. Two of them are over 70. About 20% of the faculty is non-Catholic, and many of the Catholic faculty outside the religion department have little post-high school theological education. The school provides excellent retreats for the faculty and they show a desire to explore their spirituality at deeper levels. However, many feel uneasy when students ask them about Church teachings, because they have never really appropriated them at an adult level. They often just refer them to the religion department. Given the need to have the faculty as a whole engaged with the Church and its traditions, the school needs help to build a formation program that not only fans their natural desire for spiritual growth, but helps them become more confident in the catechetical realm as well.
Solution: Jack Peterson spends a day meeting with school leadership and various faculty to compile recommendations about what is needed. He then works with a committee tasked with designing and implementing a revised formation program that includes both spiritual formation and catechesis. The committee meets monthly for 6 months with Jack teleconferencing in to the meeting to share ideas from other schools and keep the process on track. During that time he also comes to a faculty in-service and leads a two hour session on the faculty’s catechetical needs, which not only gathers important data, but builds their understanding and ownership of the program being designed. At the end of the six months, Jack helps the committee prepare the role-out of the new formation program. He is also available for coaching once the implementation phase is underway.
“ I need to thank you. I have grown so much in the area of being a visionary leader and it is because of your tutelage. Thank you for investing in my life and helping me become a better leader.”
Stephen Roddy • Director of Education • Lighthouse Christian School