Saturday, April 11, 2009

Transparency Equals Leadership

I believe that, at this juncture in history, our society is in the infancy of an information revolution. I believe that the internet has the potential to transform our society, to transform the way that individuals think and behave, even more than television.

Here is a post I liked reading, written by Will Richardson.

Will Richardson suggests that the internet will compel citizens to be more transparent, connected, and sharing.

He states,
"In this same vein, I have more and more of an expectation of the teachers and especially the administrators in our schools to lead transparent lives. The fact that they are veritably “un-googleable” in terms of finding anything they have created and shared and perhaps collaborated with others on troubles me on a number of levels."

Quoting another author, he states:

"In Gary Hamel’s recent piece in the Wall Street Journal, The Facebook Generation vs. The Fortune 500, he writes, "Contribution counts for more than credentials. When you post a video to YouTube, no one asks you if you went to film school. When you write a blog, no one cares whether you have a journalism degree. Position, title, and academic degrees—none of the usual status differentiators carry much weight online. On the Web, what counts is not your resume, but what you can contribute.""

Richardson continues,

"For most principals or superintendents, however, the idea of making their learning lives transparent is not one that sits too comfortably. It’s another one of those huge shifts that is, I think, inevitable but is going to be agonizingly slow in the making. As Seidman asks, "The question before us as we consider what we need to thrive in the inter-networked world is: How do we conquer our fear of exposure and turn these new realities into new abilities and behaviors?""

I would qualify myself as a private person, uninclined to express myself and slow to share my productions. I am one of those people who needs to adapt to the new reality, and work towards becoming more transparent and collaborative. After all, if I expect my students to participate on the internet, then I should model the behaviour myself. One of the reasons I started this blog is because, if I expect my students to write a blog, then I should have experience writing one myself.

Judging by the plethora of comments to Will Richardson's article, I am not the only reader who found it interesting.


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