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Change has changed. ...

Change has changed.

We are in a critical time of history. The age of farms and factories and even information worked for a while, but everything has changed. What worked yesterday does not necessarily work today.

Organizations fail when they over-invest in “what is” at the expense of “what could be.” Executives often say, “This is how our industry work.” My stock reply: ‘Yeah, until it doesn’t.” Truth is, every organization is successful until it’s not. In a world of unprecedented change, there’s only one way to protect yourself from creative destruction—do the destructing yourself.”1

“Average is officially over because, you see, every employer today has in this hyper-connected world access to above-average computer software, robots, and not just cheap labor, but cheap genius, from so many different places. So Woody Allen’s observation that 90 percent of life is showing up is, as they say, N/A, no longer applicable. If you just show up to your job and do average, whether you are a lawyer, an accountant, or a butcher, a baker, a candlestick maker, there is a machine, a software, a robot, or a foreign worker now that is so much more quickly, cheaply, and easily available to take you out. So you had better be a creative creator or a creative server.”1

We have to say goodbye to the knowledge economy and say hello to the creative economy. A new breed of worker and leader are now required...people who are creative, good at connecting with others, and able to see solutions like no one else. Indispensable.2

We are at a “tipping point” in education. With competition from private schools, charters schools, home schools, and virtual schools; with education funding in a crisis of epic proportions; with new, yet inefficient, assessment systems; and with the shift toward globalization, it is time.

As our ancestors proved in shifting from the agricultural system to the industrial system, we can do it, but we must be willing to adapt. That’s why we need to change the way we change.

1 From What Matters Now: How to Win in a World of Relentless Change, Ferocious Competition, and Unstoppable Innovation by Gary Hamel (Hardcover - Feb 1, 2012)
2 From Linchpin: Are You Indispensable? by Seth Godin (Hardcover - Jan 26, 2010)

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Change Has Changed! Handout Change Has Changed! Handout Document Transcript

  • Changed Has Changed! Presented by Chris Shade, Director of District Improvement TIA July 26, 2012 expressed I Imagine a stack of 400 pennies. Each penny represents 250 years of human culture, and the entire stack signifies the 100,000 years. Take the top one off the stack. This one penny represents how many years our society has revolved around factories and the jobs and the world as we see it. The other 399 coins stand for a very different view of commerce, economy, and culture. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5UT04p5f7U Page 1 of 24
  • Do you remember the old American Dream?Keep your head down. Follow instructions. Show up on time. Work hard. Suck itup. …you will be rewarded.That dream is over.The new American Dream is this: Be remarkable. Be generous. Create art. Makejudgment calls. Connect people and idea. …and we have no choice to reward you. Page 2 of 24
  • Here’s the deal our parents signed up for: Our world is filled with factories.Factories that make widgets and insurance and websites, factories that makemovies and take care of sick people and answer the telephone. These factoriesneed workers. If you learn how to be one of these workers, if you pay attention inschool, follow instructions, show up on time, and try hard, we will take care ofyou. We will pay you a lot of money, give you health insurance, and offer you jobsecurity. It was the American Dream. It worked.All of humanity’s scientific advances would have contributed little to our qualityof life if they hadn’t been accompanied by equally astounding breakthroughts inmanagement science. Over the past century, much of this innovation was focusedon getting people to be as reliable as machines, a challenge that required a newand systematic approach to the problem of control. The name for that approach:bureaucracy. 184In routinizing work, we risked routinizied human beings. Indeed, this wasinevitable, since the goal of bureaucracy was (and is) to excise the human factor,to turn people into machines made of flesh and blood. 186 Page 3 of 24
  • Most white-collar workers wear white collars, but they’re still working in thefactory. They push a pencil or process an application or type on a keyboardinstead of operating a [machine]. The white-collar job was supposed to save themiddle class, because it was machine-proof. Of course, machines have replacedthose workers. If we can measure it, we can do it faster. If we can put it in amanual, we can outsource it. If we can outsource it, we can get it cheaper.But in the face of competition and technology, the bargain has fallen apart. Jobgrowth is flat at best. Wages in many industries are in a negative cycle. Themiddle class is under siege like never before, and the future appears dismal.People are no longer being taken care of—pensions are gone; 401(k)s have beensliced in half; and it’s hard to see where to go from here. It’s futile to work hard atrestoring the take-care-of-you bargain. The bargain is gone and it’s not worthwhining about and it’s not effective to complain. There’s a new bargain now, onethat leverages talent and creativity and art more than it rewards obedience.Change has changed. We are surrounded by all sorts of things that are changingat an exceptional pace: the number of mobile phones in the world, CO2emissions, data storage, the power of semiconductor chips, the number ofdevices connected to the Internet, the number of genes that have beensequenced, world energy consumption, and knowledge itself. As human beings,we don’t have much experience with exponential change. 85 Page 4 of 24
  • What are the most important inventions of the last 100 years?http://todaysmeet.com/breadhttps://www.phoenix.edu/lectures/gary-hamel/management-matters.htmlhttps://www.phoenix.edu/lectures/gary-hamel/management-2.html Page 5 of 24
  • Most [organizations] end up shackled to one business model—and when itatrophies, so does the institution. 96Truth is, every[thing] is successful until it’s not. 104Change brings both promise and peril, but the proportion facing any particularorganization depends on its capacity to adapt. And therein lies the problem: ourorganizations were never built to be adaptable. Those early managementpioneers, a hundred years ago, set out to build companies that were disciplined,not resilient. The understood that efficiency comes from routinizing thenonroutine. 87 Page 6 of 24
  • I’ve never met a leader who swears allegiance to the status quo, and yet feworganizations seem capable of proactive change. How do we explain this? I thinkthe answer lies, in part, with the difficulty we have in identifying our deeplyengrained habits.[What are our deeply engrained habits?] 101In our topsy-turvy world, you’re either going forward or going backwards—butyou’re never standing still—and at the moment, a lot of organizations are goingbackwards. 95I believe that institutional longevity has value, but I believe that everyorganization must continually earn its right to exist. 117 Page 7 of 24
  • Once [an organization] crests the peak of industry leadership, its employees, fromtop to bottom, start to think defensively. The organizational ethos shifts fromentrepreneurial to custodial. Executives who once challenged the status quo nowdefend it.As a company grows, its attention shifts from innovation to improvement.Discipline, focus, and alignment take center stage. As this happens, assets, skills,and processes become more specialized, and change becomes more incremental.All of this is great for efficiency but deadly for adaptability. After a while, all of thecomponents of the business system are so tightly interlaced that almost any sortof change is apt to be seen as dangerously disruptive. 107In most organizations, deep-rooted assumptions are the biggest barrier toadaptation. 122[What deep-rooted assumptions do we hold?]Organizations don’t die from “natural causes”. “They die from predictablecauses”. 115 Page 8 of 24
  • When organizations dies, it is usually from suicide, from the decisions made andnot made, that rendered the institution unfit for the future. 115Individuals change only when they have to, or when they want to. Deep change isusually crisis-driven. People are usually pushed to change by circumstance outsidetheir control. In the absence of purpose, the only thing that will disrupt the statusquo is pain. 130There are three things you can do to inoculate yourself against denial. 99First, be humble. Regard your industry beliefs as mere hypothesis, forever opento disconfirmation. Executives often say, “This is how our industry works.” Mystock reply: “Yeah, until it doesn’t.”Second, be honest. Seek out the most discomforting facts you can find and sharethem with everyone in your organization. A leader has to confront the future, notdiscredit it. So find the dissident voices inside your organization and give them aplatform.Another way to head off entropy is keep the mission paramount. It is easy, overtime, to elevate form over function and confuse programs with purpose. 100 Page 9 of 24
  • [Organizations] fail when they over-invest in “what is” at the expense of “whatcould be.” 124There are only two things, I think, that can throw our habits into sharp relief: acrisis that brutally exposes our collective myopia, or a mission so compelling andpreposterous that it forces us to rethink our time-worn practices. 101There are only two things, I think, that can throw our habits into sharp relief: acrisis that brutally exposes our collective myopia, or a mission so compelling andpreposterous that it forces us to rethink our time-worn practices. 101 Page 10 of 24
  • Building a truly adaptable company is a lot of work. It requires a shift inaspirations, behaviors, and management systems. 88Building a truly adaptable company is a lot of work. It requires a shift inaspirations, behaviors, and management systems. 88[You can ask, what does Disneyland, Singapore Airlines, Fandango, or Lexus do,for example, to engender great customer experiences, and how might thosepractices be applied in our industry? Innovation isn’t always about invention;often it’s about borrowing great ideas from other industries.]Get a group of colleagues or customers together and ask each person to identify aproduct or service that dramatically reshaped their expectations—something thatmade them go “Wow! How amazing!”[Identify an experience that provoked a gusher of good feelings. Next, ask folks,what were the unique attributes of that experience that made it so memorable?How exactly did it defy their expectations? How might we leverage this idea toredefine customer expectations in our own industry?] 71 Page 11 of 24
  • Trader Joe’s[If Google, Facebook, Amazon, Virgin, or some other highly admired company wasintent on reinventing your industry, how would they use their competencies andassets to do so, and what could you gain by partnering with them? As individualslearn to see their company and others from this perspective, the opportunities forinnovation will multiply.] 68Within any organization, it’s usually the malcontents and rebels who are the firstto sense the impending demise of a long-cherished business model, and the firstto see the value in wacky, new ideas. Yet these folks are often muzzled ratherthan encouraged to speak up. The best leaders are the ones who get the mostoptions on the table before making a decision, and the most adaptablecompanies will be those that encourage folks to voice heretical viewpoints. 123 Page 12 of 24
  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=No1MxAnHuJMIf the values in the left-hand column distinguish Apple, what are the values thatcharacterize your [organization]. 80To be an innovator you have to challenge the beliefs that everyone else takes forgranted—the long-held assumptions that blind industry incumbents to new waysof doing business. Innovators are natural contrarians (“What box?”), and with alittle practice, anyone can learn how to uncover and challenge long-static beliefs.Here are a couple of questions you can use to arouse the contrarian instincts ofyour team: First, in what respects is our business model indistinguishable fromthat of our competitors? To what extent is our value proposition, service bundle,pricing, customer support, distribution, or supply chain undifferentiated? Andsecond, what aspects of our business model have remained unchanged over thepast 3-5 years? Whenever you identify a convergent belief, ask, does this rest onsome inviolable law of physics, or is it simply an artifact of our devotion toprecedent? 64 Page 13 of 24
  • Innovators don’t waste a lot of time speculating about what might change;they’re not big on scenario planning. They pay a lot of attention to the little thingsthat are already changing, but have gone unnoticed by industry stalwarts.Innovators are constantly on the lookout for emerging discontinuities—intechnology, regulation, lifestyle, values, and geopolitics—that could be harnessedto overturn old industry structures. What this requires is not so much a crystalball as a wide-angled lens. You have to learn in places your competitors aren’teven looking. 65Innovators don’t waste a lot of time speculating about what might change;they’re not big on scenario planning. They pay a lot of attention to the little thingsthat are already changing, but have gone unnoticed by industry stalwarts.Innovators are constantly on the lookout for emerging discontinuities—intechnology, regulation, lifestyle, values, and geopolitics—that could be harnessedto overturn old industry structures. What this requires is not so much a crystalball as a wide-angled lens. You have to learn in places your competitors aren’teven looking. 65You can’t outrun the future if you don’t see it coming. More often than not,companies miss the future not because it was unknowable, but because it wasdisconcerting. 120The conversation about “where to go next” should be dominated by individualswho have their emotional equity invested in the future rather than in the past. Itneeds to be led by individuals who don’t feel the need to defend decisions thatwere taken ten or twenty years ago. 121 Page 14 of 24
  • Principles for building an adaptable company: variety (you have to try a lot of newthings); decentralization (you need to create mechanisms for bottom-up change);serendipity (you have to create more opportunities for unexpected encountersand unscripted conversations); and allocation flexibility (you have to make it easyfor resources to find one another). 131We need to turn the assumption of “organization first, human beings second” onits head. Instead of asking, how do we get employees to better serve theorganization, we need to ask, how do we build organizations that deserve theextraordinary gifts that employees could bring to work? The most important taskfor any manager today is to create a work environment that inspires exceptioncontribution and that merits an outpouring of passion, imagination, and initiative.142 Page 15 of 24
  • We have to say goodbye to the knowledge economy and say hello to the creativeeconomy.Engagement may have been irrelevant in the industrial economy and optional inthe knowledge economy, but it’s pretty much the whole game now. 142[How can you expect people to be engaged in their work if their work isn’tengaging?]Three things are critical to engagement: first, the scope that employees have tolearn and advance (are there opportunities to grow?); second, the company’sreputation and its commitment to making a difference in the world (is there amission that warrants extraordinary effort?); and third, the behaviors and valuesof the organization’s leaders (are they trusted, do people want to follow them?)]143If we’re going to improve engagement we have to start by admitting that ifemployees aren’t as enthusiastic, impassioned, and excited as they could be, it’snot because work sucks, it’s because management blows. Page 16 of 24
  • [Ask yourself what task would you take on if you were free to choose? What bosswould you work for if it were up to you?] 149Low-trust, low engagement institutions will fail to fully exploit the talents of theirmembers, and consequently be less innovative and resilent. The combination ofheavy-handed regulation and underleveraged talent will result in institutions thatare less competitive than they might be. And we deserve better. No on shouldhave to work in an organization that feels more like a centrally planned economythan a vibrant, open community. 150We understand we live in an uncertain world, where no one can guarantee ourjob security. We also understand that individual interests vary, and that no singleorganization can reconcile all our competing demands. Nevertheless, we expectour institutions to be our servants and not the reverse. This implies organizationsthat are built around some simple but important principles:• Decentralize whenever possible• Emphasize community over hierarchy• Ensure transparency in decision making• Make leaders more accountable to the led• Align rewards with contributions, rather than power and position• Substitute peer review for top-down review 151To create an organization that’s adaptable and innovative, people need thefreedom to challenge precedent, to “waste” time, to go outside of channels, toexperiment, to take risks and to follow their passions. 163Policies and rules are important—no organization can survive without them. Mostorganizations, though, are overcontrolled. That’s because control works like aratchet. Managers are incentives to create rules, not abolish them. More rulesmean more things to control, and that means more job security and more power.164If you’re a formally appointed leader, and you want to turn sheep into shepherds,you have to take off your leadership mantle and say to people, “I don’t have aplan, what’s yours?” That’s humbling, but it’s the only way to release the latenttalents within your organization.Let people find the work that best suits their interests. This is the key to building acommunity of passion. When you force people into slots, you get slot-shapedcontributions; you don’t get bold and astonishing contributions. If you want the Page 17 of 24
  • unexpected, you have to give people the freedom to do the unexpected. 162To create an organization that’s adaptable and innovative, people need thefreedom to challenge precedent, to “waste” time, to go outside of channels, toexperiment, to take risks and to follow their passions. 163Policies and rules are important—no organization can survive without them. Mostorganizations, though, are overcontrolled. That’s because control works like aratchet. Managers are incentives to create rules, not abolish them. More rulesmean more things to control, and that means more job security and more power.164172-174 Web-based collaborationHave you ever been more enthused about something you were told to do, ratherthan something you chose to do?“Theory X” [is] a management mindset that regards employees as lazy and ill-disciplined. In this view, workers are shirkers. They will be industrious only to theextent they are monitored by supervisors and motivated by extrinsic rewards,such as money and the threat of punishment. Control, in a Theory X organization,comes from without, not within.“Theory Y”, by contrast, holds that employees are inherently self-motivating. Theyare eager to do a good job and will happily do so if given the chance. Here,motivation comes from the pride of accomplishment rather than from a cleveramalgam of sticks and carrots. Build a high-trust organization and employees willreciprocate by exhibiting a high degree of self-control. 186“I have no argument with control, per se. No organization can long survivewithout a strong spine of discipline. I do believe, though, that most organizationsare overcontrolled and wrongly controlled. They are overcontrolled in the sensethat managers try to control too many things, too tightly; and wrongly controlledin that control comes too much from supervisors and edits rather than from peersand norms.” Gary Hamel 188 Page 18 of 24
  • As an emotional catalyst, wealth maximization [or test scores] lacks the power tomobilize the energies of every employee. It’s neither specific nor compellingenough to spur renewal. For these reasons, tomorrow’s management practicesmust be focused on the achievement of socially significant and noble goals. 246Passion is a significant multiplier of human effort, particularly when like-mindedindividuals converge around a worthy cause. Companies must facilitate theemergence of communities of passion by allowing individuals to find a highercalling within their work lives, by connecting employees who share similarpassions, and by better aligning the organization’s objectives with the naturalinterests of its employees. 248 Page 19 of 24
  • Human beings are most productive when work feels like play. Enthusiasm, imagination, and resourcefulness get unleashed when people are having fun. In the future, the most successful organizations will be the ones that have learned how to blur the line between work and play. Management innovators must engineer the drudgery out of work. 249 Play: “The opposite of play isn’t work. It’s depression.” AWNM 187“People rarely succeed atanything unless they are “People rarely succeed at anything unless they are having fun doing it.”having fun doing it.”~Southwest Airlines (Southwest Airlines company’s mission statement)mission statement Play: “The opposite of play isn’t work. It’s depression.” AWNM 187 “People rarely succeed at anything unless they are having fun doing it.” (Southwest Airlines company’s mission statement) Page 20 of 24
  • The challenge may seem intimidating, but take heart. Those early managementpioneers had to turn free-thinking, obstreperous human beings into obedient,kowtowing employees. They were working against the grain of human nature.We, on the other hand, are working with the grain. Our goal is to makeorganizations more human, not less. 25613.Culture changes to match the economy, not the other way around. The economyneeded an institution that would churn out compliant workers, so we built it.Factories didn’t happen because there were schools; schools happened becausethere were factories.The reason so many people grew up to look for a job is that the economy hasneeded people who would grown up to look for a job. Jobs were invented beforeworkers were invented.School, no surprise, is focused on creating hourly workers, because that’s whatthe creators of school needed, in large numbers. Think about the fact that schoolrelentlessly downplays group work. It breaks tasks into the smallest possiblemeasurable units. It does nothing to coordinate teaching across subjects. It oftenisolates teachers into departments. And most of all, it measures, relentlessly, atthe individual level, and re-processes those who don’t meet the minimumperformance standards. Page 21 of 24
  • 3.150 years ago, adults were incensed about child labor. Low-wage kids were takingjobs away from hard-working adults. Sure, there was some moral outrage about7-year-olds losing fingers and being abused at work, but the economic rationalwas paramount. Factory owners insisted that losing child workers would becatastrophic to their industries and fought hard to keep the kids at work—theysaid they couldn’t afford to hire adults. It wasn’t until 1918 that nationwidecompulsory education was in place. Part of the rationale used to sell this minortransformation to industrialists was the idea that educated kids would actuallybecome more compliant and productive workers. Our current system of teachingkids to sit in straight rows and obey rules isn’t a coincidence—it was aninvestment in our economic future. The plan: trade short-term child-labor wagesfor longer-term productivity by giving kids a head start in doing what they’re told.Large-scale education was not developed to motivate kids or to create scholars. Itwas invented to churn out adults who worked well within the system.If you do a job where someone tells you exactly what to do, he will find someonecheaper than you to do it. And yet our schools are churning out kids who arestuck looking for jobs where the boss tells them exactly what to do.The bargain (take kids out of work so we can teach them to become betterfactory workers as adults) has set us on a race to the bottom. Some people arguethat we ought to become the cheaper, easier country for sourcing cheap,compliant workers who do what their told. Even if we could win that race, we’dlose. The bottom is not a good place to be, even if you’re capable.http://todaysmeet.com/top101960 Page 22 of 24
  • 39.In 1960, the top ten employers in the U.S. were: GM, AT&T, Ford, GE, U.S. Steel,Sears, A&P, Esso, Bethlehem Steel, and IT&T. Eight of these (not so much Searsand A&P) offered substantial pay and a long-term career to hard-working peoplewho actually made something. It was easy to see how the promises ofadvancement and a social contract could be kept, particularly for the “goodstudent” who had demonstrated an ability and willingness to be part of thesystem.Today, the top ten employers are: Walmart, Kelly Services, IBM, UPS, McDonald’s,Yum (Taco Bell, KFC, et al), Target, Kroger, HP, and The Home Depot. Of these,only two (two!) offer a path similar to the one that the vast majority of majorcompanies offered fifty years ago.http://todaysmeet.com/top10196039.In 1960, the top ten employers in the U.S. were: GM, AT&T, Ford, GE, U.S. Steel,Sears, A&P, Esso, Bethlehem Steel, and IT&T. Eight of these (not so much Searsand A&P) offered substantial pay and a long-term career to hard-working peoplewho actually made something. It was easy to see how the promises ofadvancement and a social contract could be kept, particularly for the “goodstudent” who had demonstrated an ability and willingness to be part of thesystem.Today, the top ten employers are: Walmart, Kelly Services, IBM, UPS, McDonald’s,Yum (Taco Bell, KFC, et al), Target, Kroger, HP, and The Home Depot. Of these,only two (two!) offer a path similar to the one that the vast majority of majorcompanies offered fifty years ago. Page 23 of 24
  • http://todaysmeet.com/top101960http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G8Yt4wxSblc Page 24 of 24
  • Changed Has Changed! Presented by Chris Shade, Director of District Improvement, TBD 6. If a school’s function is to create the workers we need to fuel our economy, we need to change school, because the workers we need have changed as well. 50. “Competence is the enemy of change!” says Seth Godin, author of Stop Stealing Dreams: What Is School For? He continues, “Institutions and committees like to talk about core competencies (Me: “Or Common Core Standards?”). Core competence? I’d prefer core incompetence. Competent people have a predictable, reliable process for solving a particular set of problems. They solve a problem the same way, every time. That’s what makes them reliable. That’s what makes them competent. Competent people are quite proud of the status and success that they get out of being competent. They like being competent. They guard their competence, and they work hard to maintain it. Competence is the enemy of change! Competent people resist change. Why? Because change threatens to make them less competent. And competent people like being competent. That’s who they are, and sometimes that’s all they’ve got. No wonder they’re not in a hurry to rock the boat. If I’m going to make the investment and hire someone for more than the market rate, I want to find an incompetent worker. One who will break the rules and find me something no one else can.” Page 1 of 8
  • 44.It used to be simple: the teacher was the cop, the lecturer, the source ofanswers, and the gatekeeper to resources. All rolled into one. A teachermight be the person who is capable of delivering information. A teachercan be your best source of finding out how to do something or whysomething works. The Internet is making the role of content gatekeeperunimportant. Redundant. Even wasteful. If there’s information that can bewritten down, widespread digital access now means that just aboutanyone can look it up. We don’t need a human being standing next to usto lecture us on how to find the square root of a number or sharpen anaxe. (Worth stopping for a second and reconsidering the revolutionarynature of that last sentence.) What we do need is someone to persuade usthat we want to learn those things, and someone to push us or encourageus or create a space where we want to learn to do them better.11.School’s industrial, scaled-up, measurable structure means that fear mustbe used to keep the masses in line. There’s no other way to get hundredsor thousands of kids to comply, to process that many bodies, en masse,without simultaneous coordination. And the flip side of this fear andconformity must be that passion will be destroyed. There’s no room forsomeone who wants to go faster, or someone who wants to do somethingelse, or someone who cares about a particular issue. Do we need morefear? Less passion?There are really only two tools available to the educators. The easy one isfear. Fear is easy to awake, easy to maintain, but ultimately toxic.The other tool is passion. A kid in love with dinosaurs or baseball or earthscience is going to learn it on his own. He’s going to push hard for evermore information, and better still, master the thinking behind it. Passioncan overcome fear.28Human beings have, like all animals, a great ability to hide from the thingsthey fear. In the name of comportment and compliance and theprocessing of millions, school uses that instinct to its advantage. At theheart of the industrial system is power—the power of bosses overworkers, the power of buyers over suppliers, and the power of marketersover consumers. Given the assignment of indoctrinating a thousand kidsat a time, the embattled schooladministrator reaches for the most effective tool available. Given that theassigned output of school is compliant citizens, the shortcut for achievingthis output was fear. The amygdala, sometimes called the lizard brain, isthe fear center of the brain. It is on high alert during moments of stress. Itis afraid of snakes. It causes our heart to race during a scary movie and oureyes to avoid direct contact with someone in authority. The shortcut tocompliance, then, isn’t to reason with someone, to outline the options, Page 2 of 8
  • and to sell a solution. No, the shortcut is to induce fear, to activate theamygdala. Do this or we’lllaugh at you, expel you, tell your parents, make you sit in the corner. Dothis or you will get a bad grade, be suspended, never amount to anything.Do this or you are in trouble. Once the fear transaction is made clear, itcan get ever more subtle. A fearsome teacher might need no more than aglance to quiet down his classroom. But that’s not enough for theindustrial school. It goes further than merely ensuring classroomcomportment. Fear is used to ensure that no one stretches too far,questions the status quo, or makes a ruckus. Fear is reinforced in careerplanning, in academics, and even in interpersonalinteractions. Fear lives in the guidance office, too. The message is simple:better fit in or you won’t get into a good school. If you get into a goodschool and do what they say, you’ll get a good job, and you’ll be fine. Butif you don’t—it’ll go on your permanent record.25.The connection economy destroys the illusion of control. Students havethe ability to find out which colleges are a good value, which courses makeno sense, and how people in the outside world are actually making aliving. They have the ability to easily do outside research to discover thatthe teacher (or textbook) is just plain wrong.7.The world has changed. It has changed into a culture fueled by a marketthat knows how to mass-customize, to find the edges and the weird, andto cater to what the individual demands instead of insisting on conformity.Mass customization of school isn’t easy. Do we have a choice, though? Ifmass production and mass markets are falling apart, we really don’t havethe right to insist that the schools we designed for a different era willfunction well now. Page 3 of 8
  • Sure, education is expensive, but living in a world of ignorance is evenmore expensive.It starts right here. (Right here. Right now. song)45.Shouldn’t parents do the motivating? Of course they should. They shouldhave the freedom to not have to work two jobs, they should be awareenough of the changes in society to be focused on a new form ofeducation, and they should have the skills and the confidence and thetime to teach each child what he needs to know to succeed in a new age.But they’re not and they don’t. And as a citizen, I’m not sure I want totrust a hundred million amateur teachers to do a world-class job ofdesigning our future. Some parents (like mine) were just stunningly greatat this task, serious and focused and generous while they relentlesslytaught my sisters and me about what we could accomplish and how to goabout it. I can’t think of anything more cynical and selfish, though, thantelling kids who didn’t win the parent lottery that they’ve lost the entiregame. Society has the resources and the skill (and thus the obligation) toreset cultural norms and to amplify them through schooling. I don’t thinkwe maximize our benefit when we turn every child’s education into a first-time home-based project. We can amplify each kid’s natural inclination todream, we can inculcate passion in a new generation, and we can give kidsthe tools to learn more, and faster, in a way that’s never been seenbefore. And if parents want to lead (or even to help, or merely get out ofthe way), that’s even better. Page 4 of 8
  • 48.That feeling you’re feeling (if you haven’t given up because of thefrightening implications of this manifesto) is the feeling just about everyparent has. It’s easier to play it safe. Why risk blowing up the educationalsystem, why not just add a bit to it? Why risk the education of our kidsmerely because the economy has changed? That whisper in your ear, thathesitation about taking dramatic action—that’s precisely why we still havethe system we do. That’s how we get stuck with the status quo. When it’ssafer and easier and quieter to stick with what we’ve got, we end upsticking with what we’ve got. If just one parent asks these questions,nothing is going to happen. Every parent has an excuse and a specialsituation and no one wants to go out on a limb… but if a dozen or ahundred parents step up and start asking, the agenda will begin to change.The urgency of our problem is obvious, and it seems foolish to me topolish the obsolete when we ought to be investing our time and moneyinto building something that actually meets our needs. We can’t switchthe mission unless we also switch the method.48.That feeling you’re feeling (if you haven’t given up because of thefrightening implications of this manifesto) is the feeling just about everyparent has. It’s easier to play it safe. Why risk blowing up the educationalsystem, why not just add a bit to it? Why risk the education of our kidsmerely because the economy has changed? That whisper in your ear, thathesitation about taking dramatic action—that’s precisely why we still havethe system we do. That’s how we get stuck with the status quo. When it’ssafer and easier and quieter to stick with what we’ve got, we end upsticking with what we’ve got. If just one parent asks these questions,nothing is going to happen. Every parent has an excuse and a specialsituation and no one wants to go out on a limb… but if a dozen or ahundred parents step up and start asking, the agenda will begin to change.The urgency of our problem is obvious, and it seems foolish to me topolish the obsolete when we ought to be investing our time and moneyinto building something that actually meets our needs. We can’t switchthe mission unless we also switch the method. Page 5 of 8
  • 48.That feeling you’re feeling (if you haven’t given up because of thefrightening implications of this manifesto) is the feeling just about everyparent has. It’s easier to play it safe. Why risk blowing up the educationalsystem, why not just add a bit to it? Why risk the education of our kidsmerely because the economy has changed? That whisper in your ear, thathesitation about taking dramatic action—that’s precisely why we still havethe system we do. That’s how we get stuck with the status quo. When it’ssafer and easier and quieter to stick with what we’ve got, we end upsticking with what we’ve got. If just one parent asks these questions,nothing is going to happen. Every parent has an excuse and a specialsituation and no one wants to go out on a limb… but if a dozen or ahundred parents step up and start asking, the agenda will begin to change.The urgency of our problem is obvious, and it seems foolish to me topolish the obsolete when we ought to be investing our time and moneyinto building something that actually meets our needs. We can’t switchthe mission unless we also switch the method.17. Reinventing schoolIf the new goal of school is to create something different from what wehave now, and if new technologies and new connections are changing theway school can deliver its lessons, it’s time for a change. Here are a dozenways school can be rethought:• Homework during the day, lectures at night• Open book, open note, all the time• Access to any course, anywhere in the world• Precise, focused instruction instead of mass, generalized instruction• The end of multiple-choice exams• Experience instead of test scores as a measure of achievement• The end of compliance as an outcome• Cooperation instead of isolation• Amplification of outlying students, teachers, and ideas• Transformation of the role of the teacher• Lifelong learning, earlier work• Death of the nearly famous college Page 6 of 8
  • 108.One thing a student can’t possibly learn from a video lecture is that theteacher cares. Not just about the topic—that part is easy. No, the studentcan’t learn that the teacher cares about him. And being cared about,connected with, and pushed is the platform we need to do the emotionalheavy lifting of committing to learn.DHS coach132.When we teach a child to make good decisions, we benefit from a lifetimeof good decisions. When we teach a child to love to learn, the amount oflearning will become limitless. When we teach a child to deal with achanging world, she will never become obsolete. When we are braveenough to teach a child to question authority, even ours, we insulateourselves from those who would use their authority to work against eachof us. And when we give students the desire to make things, even choices,we create a world filled with makers.131.Don’t wait for it. Pick yourself. Teach yourself. Motivate your kids. Pushthem to dream, against all odds. Access to information is not the issue.And you don’t need permission from bureaucrats. The common school isgoing to take a generation to fix, and we mustn’t let up the pressure untilit is fixed. But in the meantime, go. Learn and lead and teach. If enough ofus do this, school will have no choice but to listen, emulate, and rush tocatch up. Page 7 of 8
  • In a world of unprecedented change, there’s only one way to protect yourself from creative destruction—do the destructing yourself. 122 Going back to the beginning of the session, I’m going to collect $20 bills now…76201 Page 8 of 8