If you’ve been a frequent visitor to SchoolAdvancement.com, I hope you’ve read some of the Marketing Matters articles which speak to the importance of having a compelling vision. This vision is the responsibility of the leader of the school, and is why the leader of the school has been placed in that position at this particular point in history. Look back over the history of organizations, including the Church, or even the United States of America. You will see that the organization was significantly influenced by the vision of its leader during that period of time.
You’re probably saying that makes perfect sense. Look at the impact Pope John Paul II had on the Catholic Church. But remember that Pope John Paul I was the first pontiff to have an installation Mass, breaking with the long-standing tradition of a papal crowning. Although “The Smiling Pope” spent only 34 days as the Holy See before suffering a fatal heart attack, his motto of “Humility” was personified in the first act of his papacy.
But now let’s apply that principle to your school. What is your vision for your school? Is it just to get through the year, hoping that parents pay all their tuition so that the school can open its doors once again next year? Or do you envision more children in your school next year, more the year after that, and still more five years down the road with more parental involvement, vibrant classrooms with teachers who are enthusiastic in their teaching methods and even more excited that they can infuse Gospel values into their work to form the next generation of leaders?
The second part of that statement is a little more exciting than the first, isn’t it? That’s what parents want to see for their children too.
So not only picture your school three or five years down the road, but take a look at the picture that currently promotes your school. Is it on your Web site and your brochures? I’ve been seeing a lot of Web sites of schools lately, and lots of them have pictures of the school – or at least a building that looks like a school on a cloudless perfect day – with no cars around it, no children coming in or going out, no parents talking to one another or to the principal or teachers, and no smiling children playing catch or reading a book while waiting for their ride home. What do I see online? An empty school.
If that’s how your brochure or your Web site depicts your school, change it – NOW – before that vision becomes a reality.
© Michael V. Ziemski, SchoolAdvancement, 2008-2018 (Original Publication Date: 20080922)