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5 Layers to Building a Culture of Retention: Contribution


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One of our core needs as human beings is a sense of service which prompts us to help and support others. Put differently, we have an innate need to want to contribute in a meaningful way.


Yet the pattern I see in a lot of centers is that their culture is built around obligation rather than contribution.


In a culture of obligation, people see obstacles as burdens, changing demands as reasons to give up, and unclear directions as an excuse to wait to be told what to do. It’s a type of environment where people are there because they feel they have to be.


On the other hand, in a culture of contribution, people view obstacles as situations to step up, changing demands as chances to collaborate, and unclear directions as opportunities to become a leader. 


In this culture, people aren’t there because they feel they have to be—they’re there because they want to be. They stick around because they want to contribute to something greater than themselves.


But that sort of environment isn’t created out of nothing. It takes careful reflection on your part as a leader to cultivate a space where your team and staff want to show up in meaningful ways.


In this week’s podcast episode, I’m continuing our multipart series on building a culture of retention within your center. 


This time, I’ll be focusing on contribution and how cultivating this type of environment can create long-term benefits for your center. 


Join me for a conversation about:


  • The difference between a culture of contribution and a culture of obligation
  • Contribution and why it has a place among the 6 core human needs
  • Why few people have contribution as part of their retention strategy
  • 7 questions to consider when cultivating a culture of contribution in your center


This episode requires a lot of reflection, so you may want to listen more than once or save it for a moment when you can sit down and focus. But rest assured that the effort you dedicate to self-reflection now will help you immensely as you start to make changes within your center.


Resources and links mentioned in this episode:

Looking for support as you work on developing a mindset of contribution among your team and staff? Our Owner’s Only HQ and Director’s Inner Circle membership programs provide the perfect space to validate your struggles, learn from other leaders, and brainstorm solutions. Plus, you’ll also get access to other tools, resources, and coaching that will help you on your journey to building a school of excellence.

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More about the show:

If you are an Early Childhood director or owner, prepare to transform your school and life with the Schools of Excellence podcast. Tune in each week to learn from Chanie Wilschanski, the founder and host of the Schools of Excellence Podcast and a mom of 4 little kids. Each episode will be packed with tools and strategies – equipping you to build schools with higher staff retention, teacher motivation, parent partnership, collaborative culture, and beautiful quality of life.

Every week, Chanie shares the truth about the journey to excellence, the strategies that are working TODAY, and the mindset about the critical decisions and choices that you make every day which impact yourself, your teachers, parents, family, and children who you serve every day.

In addition to weekly solo episodes, she’ll also be inviting industry leaders and the changing makers of the landscape of education to give listeners the inside knowledge of what it takes to sustain excellence.

Don’t miss an episode, subscribe today for everything you need for your leadership journey!