TregoED Blog

Courage: One Necessary Ingredient for Effective Change

In October, TregoeD was pleased to award three school districts with the inaugural Benjamin B. Tregoe Award for Strategic Leadership in Education.  The award recognizes districts, individuals or teams that have achieved significant and enduring results using TregoED tools. Winning entries demonstrated successful resolution of a critical issue or problem and operational or systemic changes that have had lasting value.

Those recognized were:

  • Colorado Springs School District 11 for its innovative use of Problem Analysis in determining significant drivers of student achievement at the school level.
  • Newton-Conover City Schools for its use of collaboration and Decision Analysis in making a critical hiring decision.
  • Sewanhaka Central High School District for its collaborative use of Situation Appraisal, Decision Analysis and Potential Problem Analysis on a systemic level in determining budget allocations and preparing for a successful bond referendum.

Significant use of TregoED tools can create enduring results – but it also requires courage:

Courage to let go – collaboration is sometimes scary for people because they feel they are giving up control of the outcome. However, anyone who has ever tried to implement an unpopular solution quickly experiences how little control they really have.  It takes courage to trust and validate the good thinking of others by giving them a significant role in decision-making.

Courage of clarity – sometimes the truth hurts, and sugar-coating it does not necessarily ease the pain – it only makes it easier to live in denial.  Without this clarity and openness about a problem you end up just putting another bandaid on it and kicking it down the line.  Having the courage to find the root cause of the problem – even if things you did or did not do contributed to it – frees us to stop pointing fingers elsewhere and begin looking at what we can do about it.  Fearlessly seeking the truth, and doing “the right thing” with it, can be the catalyst for true, enduring change.

Over the years, we have been thrilled and humbled to see the significant and innovative ways so many districts have used TregoED tools.  We are so proud of the work that each of our clients have done, and this year, we are especially pleased to be able to acknowledge these three districts in this special way.  There are so many examples of leadership courage out there – we look forward to continuing to celebrate them!