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Tuesday, May 23, 2017

We Can Do It Better

Betterment signals stress to some. They see better as the addition of more work, change, and the potential for failure. They would rather stick with what we have, than make change.

Making things better takes time, transparency, inclusion, and good process--it's not a simple matter, but it can be wonderfully transformative and positive for any social group or organization.

When seeking betterment, it's best to see it as a team sport, one that includes the voices and choices of all stakeholders. Betterment profits from collaboration though a spirit of competition when used well can sometimes energize efforts to make things better. Competition, however, when used poorly can hinder, halt or destroy efforts for betterment.

Without good process, betterment efforts can actually create the opposite effect. Those seeking better may hurt relationships, waste important resources and time, miss important voices, and ill-direct efforts if they don't make the time to identify good strategic process--the kind of process that's inclusive, transparent, and goes full circle or spiral from start to finish(es).

The desire to do it better doesn't mean that you're not already doing a good job, it simply means that you want to evolve practice to well match the latest research, potential, interest, and need.

For example, my students are doing well, overall, with regard to learning math, however there's definitely room for betterment as we strive to include new research and integrate the learning/teaching methods with other content standards and goals. For example, I'd like to fuse some fraction study with states of matter study--the two make a natural pair when good process is used.

How we use time affects betterment too. When big ideas are entertained regularly, those ideas begin a life of their own. Idea development requires time to ponder, create, discuss, and debate. When given good time, good ideas grow with strength.

We can do it better is a call that helps to forward the best of what we can do, and a good all to embrace together as we go forward with our commitment, investment, and good work.