What do you think?

Weekly Update

Thanks to those of you who have completed the survey about your Aspiring Leaders experience. Time is precious and as the end of term is in sight, a survey is another time drain. I invite you when you do have the opportunity: to reflect on your experience and provide some feedback. Continuous improvement is a goal for all our programs at Lane and your perspective will help us identify areas for improvement and potential new programming. As a reminder, you’re responses are anonymous – but if anyone would like to provide attribution to their feedback, let me know.

Here’s what some of you are saying:

Q: How would you describe Aspiring Leaders to an employee unfamiliar with the program?

Warren Bennis once stated, “leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality.” Aspiring Leaders trained employees to assist in translating LCC’s vision into reality.

AL was a fantastic opportunity for me to meet and network with other LCC employees. I learned so much about other areas of campus and the challenges that face LCC. On multiple occasions I was taken out of my comfort zone and feel grew because of it.

Q: Has your participation in Aspiring Leaders added value to your work at Lane? Explain how it has or how it has not.

Absolutely. I was a new employee and it immediately “shrank” the college down to a happy size. It gave me a crash course in the college culture—both what it was and what it could become. I created relationships with colleagues whom I continue to lean into for support.

It has not, it confused things because the direction given in Aspiring Leaders is not how things are run.

Q: What type of alumni efforts should the group consider?

Could we take on one project a year? Such as fundraising, an event to collect materials for the food pantry or clothing stash.

I wouldn’t put too much effort into this, though perhaps one event per year – like a coffee/tea. Maybe reach out to alumni to facilitate a discussion?

Q: Do you feel Aspiring Leaders is relevant to the mission and core values? Please explain your response. (All affirmative responses so far.)

Yes, because good leadership requires at least an openness to transformation, and building relationships is essential to helping an institution transform the lives of not only students, but staff and community as well.

Yes! Meeting and working with Lane colleagues from other departments across classified, faculty, and manager positions really demonstrated that equity lens and cultural diversity that the college is pushing towards. I saw issues from other perspectives that I had never experienced before in a safe and open place. Aspiring Leaders transformed my life through learning and all of our efforts were to improve ourselves and student success through better understanding. We touched on all of the core values at some point during the year.

Weekly Challenge

Kerry Levett, Brian Kelly and Jen Steele joined the Aspiring Leaders cohort for the December seminar. Brian and Jen received some good ideas from the small group exercise on ways to increase revenue and retention, such as differential tuition options and discounts for returning students. The group quickly ruled out a brew pub on campus.

Think you have a plan or idea that you know has worked elsewhere that could help generate new revenue or help with student enrollment and retention? Share it. Who knows what your brainstorm could spark?

Also, Kerry shared the somewhat new science of an organized life: bullet journaling. If you haven’t checked it out, you should. It takes writing things down to the next level with this key change: an index! You can use any notebook. Here’s a short video that explains it:


Give it a try. Let us know how it works out for you.

2 thoughts on “What do you think?

  1. Anonymous

    I attended the second section of Aspiring leaders many years ago. It is my understanding from Aspiring Leader Current attendees that the program is very different and much more useful than my aspiring experience was, which honestly was not very inspiring or useful. What are the options here?

    1. Marsha Sills Post author

      I’m sorry that you didn’t have a positive Aspiring Leaders experience. From my own experience, I can tell you that it’s even different this year compared to last year (my cohort). I say that as an example that the program changes each year. I was fortunate in that I had a positive professional and personal experience and continue to rely upon and learn from my cohort members. I invite you to participate in the survey and share your views on your experience. We can learn from it and it will help us move forward. We are creating opportunities for alumni to engage and you’ll find updates here, on the blog. There’s the alumni book club that is selecting books designed to support us in our work and personal and professional growth. It is also my hope that training extended to the Aspiring Leaders cohort specific to positivity and how to improve our engagement and connections with each other will be offered to other interested employees in the coming year. I also invite you to work through some of the challenges I’ve posted and will continue to post. Feel free to contact me directly: sillsm@lanecc.edu, ext. 3269 or come visit at Building 2, Room 208 — or leave an anonymous note. I don’t have my own physical mailbox, but my mail is delivered to Lynn Nakamura’s box in Building 3, upstairs. As another reminder and pitch to complete the survey: responses are anonymous. Thanks for reaching out. I appreciate your feedback.


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