Bill Ferriter, a good friend and Solution Tree Author, and I had a great dinner conversation in Australia last May that has led me to blogging. He is the reason for this site and he has a fantastic blog that is a MUST READ. The Tempered Radical.
Besides being a great educator in NC, author, presenter and friend, he also keeps me on my toes. Below is a recent e-conversation asking me if I truly believed what I wrote this past six weeks. My comments are in IU Red!
Now for a quick disclaimer. Earlier this week I was in Colorado at meeting from sun up to way past sun down. And my Uncle, with whom I was close, passed in FL so I am her for his funeral, along with my folks. I have now been in Bloomington two work days this month. This topic was something I wanted to post, but became very easy to cut and past under the certain circumstances. : ) Next week on to new topics!. But thanks Bill for pushing me here!
This is an actual e-mail conversation cut as typed from last week.
BF: Now a fun little intellectual push-back for you: Are your authors your number 1 priority, or your customers? JJ: Our priority. We do not create anything at Solution Tree. We bundle items and re-purpose items, but unlike a Pearson who has a warehouse in Jersey cranking out curriculum, we have experts authors pouring their life’s work into resources we produce on their behalf.
BF: Or the kids in classrooms that you’re trying to improve education for? JJ: That is the educator’s customer. The educator is the author’s customer.
BF: Do you better serve customers AND kids when you concentrate on identifying and advancing the work of the best authors that you can find? JJ. Absolutely.
Does placing authors at the top of your priority list, will some employees forget the role that customers and kids play in making you who you are? JJ: Not if they know the Vision Statement:Transform education worldwide to ensure learning for all.
BF: You and I have had this conversation before: I know that you prioritize authors because it means you are giving voice to the kinds of ideas that improve education for every child, everywhere. But would slipping kids and customers into your foundational statement help to keep everyone in your growing organization focused on the real reason you do what you do on behalf of authors? JJ: Vision statement should do that. The Vision Statement is the “Why” we do what we do. The Mission Statement is the “How” we do it. The Goal is “What” we do.
Until next week!