Friday, March 8, 2013

Transparent School Leadership: Engaging Social Media as a Strategy

At the NCTIES Conference this week in Raleigh, North Carolina, my presentation was "Transparent School Leadership: Managing Your School or District's Online Reputation." The basic premise of the entire presentation was based on these assumptions about school leadership and the engagement of social media.

  • School leaders no longer have a choice of whether to engage in the use of social media if they are going to communicate in a 21st century manner. Our stakeholders increasingly demand that our communication be interactive and multi-way rather than one-way. 
  • School leaders who continue to ignore social media are also missing out on its power. The reason social media can be used for good or ill is because it is a powerful communication medium. If school leaders choose to ignore it, they fail to capitalize on one of the most powerful communication tools in the 21st century.
  • School leaders need to make their social media and communication strategy deliberate and sustained. That includes making social media an integrated part of the school district's communication strategy. No more treating social media channels as an "after-thought." Twenty-first century transparent school leadership requires that social media be an integral component of how we communicate to our communities.
  • School leaders must become knowledgeable of not just the tools of social media, but also social media strategy in general. Business gets it when it comes to social media. They are engaging in deliberate social media campaigns to tell their stories and schools---school districts need to do so as well. This means school leaders need to become knowledgeable of social media as a communication craft.
Being a transparent school leader in the 21st century means using all the tools at our disposal, including social media. It means learning to capitalize on social media's power and complementing our school or district communication strategy with modern multi-way communication tools.

Here's my presentation to the NCTIES 2013 Conference in Raleigh, North Carolina.

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