By: Robyn R Jackson
Recently I had to come face to face with a brutal fact. I had to re-brand. We don’t talk about branding much in education. It seems as if branding is something that we leave to those folks in business and marketing. Education has always been viewed as being on a higher plane, somewhat above all the gimmicks and tricks that are used in business.
But, as I went through a rigorous re-branding process over the last six months, I realized that the process isn’t just for businesses. The process works well for educators too. Like it or not, there comes a time when we all need a little re-branding. As educators we all have brands. Perhaps you’re the really cool teacher whose classroom kids love to hang out in during lunch. That’s your brand. Or, you’re the really tough teacher whom all kids dread but secretly enjoy because you hold them to such high standards. That’s your brand. Maybe you’re the hardworking principal who’s always at school even on weekends. That’s your brand. Maybe your school is the artsy school where students break into song and dance in the middle of the hall. That’s your brand. Or, maybe you’re the school where all the kids get into really great colleges. That’s your brand.
But sometimes our brand doesn’t convey who we really want to be. Sometimes, the brand we’ve had for years no longer reflects who we are. Perhaps you were once the school that focused more on athletics than academics, but you’ve changed. Maybe you used to be the easy teacher who guaranteed an easy A, but you’ve toughened up. You might have once been the principal who stayed in her office all day, but now you are in classrooms and in the halls. Maybe it’s time to re-brand.
Now that school is almost over, it’s a great time to think about your brand both as an individual educator and as a school. Is your brand consistent with who you want to be? Is your brand consistent with what you believe? What if your old brand no longer fits? The good news is that you can change your brand.