My car dealer has customers take a satisfaction survey. Before one even starts, they are forewarned in red ink that anything less than a 10 out of 10 will be a call for action on the part of management. Their goal is 100% customer glee, not just satisfaction.
As I get older, I find myself becoming more and more a person of absolutes. Like my car dealer, I want 100% engagement, participation, continuous improvement, etc…I want so very much to know that the efforts of the Faculty Development Team (FDT) are really reaching people’s needs, really helping us foster that faculty culture that will not accept anything short of student success. Anything less is just…well…less.
So I hope the team doesn’t tire of my constant pecking and prodding to use the digital tools we have that can leverage greater productivity. I hope FDT members past and present realize that I’m reaching out to them and the general faculty with newsletters and blog posts and emails and IM’s and text messages and smoke signals–all to just develop a fully engaged faculty that wants to get better at the art of teaching. I am pesky because I want to hear from people, and I want to meet their needs.
I look at student success as my charge and our mission. I think that assembling as a team (for FDT meetings and also for in-services) is very important for camaraderie, collaboration and to revisit the meaning of “student success” as well as the methods to achieve it.
I do sometimes wring my hands and get vexed when there’s low participation, low responses to surveys, poor use of Basecamp, etc. I worry that I’m going to take the FDT and the whole initiative on some tangent when I do not have more interaction with faculty. I cannot imagine anyone in this role who would not constantly be polling and cajoling faculty members. All I can hope is that people will put their hands on the helm with me and guide us toward our very best–Butler’s Best.