Law of Initiative Fatigue


In his new book, Transforming Professional Development into Student Results, Doug Reeves makes a case for severely limiting the number of initiatives a school or district pursues.

“Education leaders have three essential resources: time, money, and emotional energy. Time is fixed. Financial resources are typically fixed, and in the present economy, diminishing. Emotional energy is variable.”

“The Law of Initiative Fatigue states that when the number of initiatives increases while time, resources and emotional energy are constant, then each new initiative, no matter how well conceived or well intentioned – will receive fewer minutes, dollars and ounces of emotional energy than its predecessors.”

Reader Challenge: Take a blank sheet of paper and write down every initiative in your school. Reply via comment and let us know how many initiatives you have and your thoughts about the Law of Initiative Fatigue.


JohnBr said…
Kelly, I am not sure how many initiatives that my IU currently has underway, but more than we can handle effectively, I am sure.

As an initiative generator, as well as an initiative implementer,I feel the frustration both ways. If we have a truly great program that could really help kids, how do we effectively compete for the time, energy and attention of educators who are already overwhelmed by mandates?
Kelly Pauling said…

I wish I had an easy answer. I battle the same situation. The only way to make it somewhat manageable is to set a few goals that I work on with my colleagues each year - set aside time, money and emotional energy to implement despite what other items come along.

I find these projects are some of the more interesting and creative and sustain me through the myriad of other initiatives that come along.

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