2 min read

Coffee club: Bringing principals together through the power of caffeine (and connection)

Henry Ford said something along the lines of "Coming together is a beginning, staying together is progress, and working together is success." 

In the context of our Strategic Leadership for Principals Programme, that means getting everyone together as often as possible, giving them space to connect, continue learning, share progress and cause impact for their students - however we can.

Enter our latest regular event for principals: Coffee Club.  

(Not the chain coffee store, just to clarify) 

Some C’s for consideration 

Check-in, concept and consider are the foundational C-words of Springboard’s coffee club.  

Spearheaded by our Programme Manager Chris Sullivan, the coffee club is an informal catch-up for alumni principals working with Springboard – an opportunity to reflect on what they’ve been learning, delve into new concepts and ideas, ask questions of one another, and share ideas about how they lead their school. It often happens in person, but we've just as easily held coffee clubs in a virtual environment.

It started in Wellington, with principals catching up before school. They discuss a whole range of topics – radical candour, time management, innovative communications, and of course demystifying the measurement aspects of their strategic plans.  

They’ve been enriching connections so far – and a highlight that is most definitely in line with one of the recent Mental Health Awareness Week’s core themes of recharging and reconnecting with those around you.  

And beyond the chance to connect and share, the Springboard coffee club has been a hive of learning and challenging thinking. Tools that have been brought up, discovered and taken back to schools include: 

  • “Stay interviews” - the inverse of an exit interview, where you discuss what keeps your team refreshed and engaged with the school  

  • Pulse surveys – the classic metric for wellbeing in any workplace  

  • IDEO toolkit – tools for teachers and leaders focused on human-centred design thinking 

  •  The slightly less formal but equally effective baking analogies around measurement - outcomes and outputs, the differences between them and how to achieve them.  

At a time when face to face connection is at a minimum, these informal catch-ups are proving to be enjoyable anduseful for principals both in our foundation programmes, and those who have completed them but want to stay in touch with other leaders.  

Are you interested in connecting with your cohort for a coffee, check-in and consideration of new concepts? Get in touch with your Programme Manager!  

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