(article from Rich Bagin, Executive Director National School Public Relations Association)
Many veteran superintendents will note that great communication skills will add years to your tenure as a successful superintendent. Dr. Jerry Weast, the now retired, long-term superintendent of the Montgomery County Public Schools in Maryland notes, “You can have the most innovative reform plan around, but if you are not effective in communicating about the plan, it will fail. I have seen good superintendents who do not put a priority on communication forced from their jobs … it happens because communication has not been made a priority, and is often approached only as an add-on or after thought.” NSPRA Executive Director Rich Bagin, APR, recently crafted ten PR tips for superintendents.
It’s All Personal; You Can Never Not Lead
- As your community’s top school official, you do live in a glass house. What you say and what you do is watched, recorded, repeated, and becomes fodder for the grapevine. You are seen as a role model in your community and you must become a role model for communication. It is your job to set the tone and the style of two-way communication in your system. Be known as a leading communicator who expects all staff members to communicate effectively as an everyday requirement of their job. That’s how you will begin growing a communication culture in your schools.
Read the other tips here Ten PR Tips for Superintendents.