It’s mid-September. After a summer that sometimes felt like we were living on the surface of the sun, cool grey days are popping up in the Portlandia forecast with increasing frequency, signaling to one and all that it’s probably safe to haul the box fan out to the garage, and to grab the space heater while you’re out there. I’ve spent my entire life either in school or working in schools, so the rumbling return of those yellow busses down my street always makes my heart flutter a bit with the excitement (and apprehension) of the start of something new.
Here at Hello, that September-something-new always involves a fresh theme for the year (because hey, everyone knows SLPs and themes are like peas and carrots, amiright?). We started 2014-2015 talking about Building Connections, and wrapped up the year celebrating our 10 year anniversary. But where do you go from there?
Well, if you know us at all, you know that we’re sort of obsessed with the idea of organizational culture and climate. We’re endlessly curious about what works and what doesn’t, what’s easy and what’s hard, what we’re doing well and what we’re screwing up. And in doing all of this thinking, we’ve learned a few big things: 1) culture trumps everything, 2) we don’t have all of the answers (like, not even close), and 2) we can’t possibly do this alone.
Our marketing guru recently created this wordle from the Why statements of all of the THF staff. You’ll notice that communication is prominent (duh). So is believe, students, child, helping, experience, and community. And really, that pretty much sums up our big dreams at the moment. We believe in the power of an awesome community that is built on bold and honest communication about experiences, one that is helping students and children with disabilities and those that serve them to thrive.
So, there you have it. Communication Builds Community is our theme for the year.
This year, we’re gonna reach out and say “Hello! What have you been up to? How’s it going?” We’re gonna be bold and say “Um, yeah, we tried this and hooo boy, did we screw it up.” And it’s gonna be awesome. That’s the plan, anyway 😉 Here’s to a great year communication and community building ahead!