Monday, August 29, 2016

Orange Frogs: Media Staff’s Critical Role in School Climate

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Today our district media specialists and paraprofessionals took part in an all day workshop on positivity. The training was based on The Happiness Advantage: The Orange Frog Parable by Shawn Achor. Shawn, a former Harvard researcher, has focused much of his work on positive psychology. He and his staff travel around the world speaking and training on positivity in the workplace.

As our trainer Devin Hughes explained today, happiness is a choice. The Orange Frog story is a parable about the effect that an individual with a positive attitude can have on a workplace. How anyone and everyone chooses to view and react to situations affects both ourselves and those around us.

Research has proven that our mindset matters, and realizing and remembering this fact is important to maintaining a healthy and happy work environment. Read more details about the parable here.

Besides the school principal and perhaps the front office staff, very few other staff in a school interact with as many different employees and students as the media staff do. Media staff in our schools are often the first point of contact for many--staff, students, and parents--whether it is a problem with technology or a research question. Therefore, these individuals have a lot of influence on the overall attitude and school culture. If they choose to interact with positivity, it will have a direct correlation and effect on the climate of the school.

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The workshop was a great reminder of this fact and provided staff with a number of ways to remember that what they THINK and what they DO matter. Staff learned how to lead with positive results and nurture habits which result in an increase in productivity and happiness. (Watch the author's TED Talk below at 11 minutes to hear what these habits are.) This, in turn, has a “ripple effect” that touches others around them. I’m excited to see the effects of this work and how it impacts the environment of our media centers at each school!

Learn more here:

The Orange Frog Book: Spreading a Positive Story About Creating a Happier, More Productive, More Satisfying Life and Workplace.

Why Can’t We All Be Happy at Work? Although scientific support for the bene!ts of happiness is mounting, creating a happy and engaged culture requires a new kind of organizational learning.
  • 63 percent of employees worldwide are not engaged in their jobs and an additional 24 percent are actively disengaged.
  • “Although we must continue to find solutions to problems, our social scripts must balance this problem-focused approach with a simultaneous focus on creating positive workplace environments and emotions that foster optimal work performance.”
  • “If Happiness Is a Business Strategy, Treat It Like One.”

Broadcasting Happiness: The Science of Igniting and Sustaining Positive Change 75% of job success can be predicted from a person’s overall work optimism, positive engagement, and support provision.

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