This is a blog from the Superintendent of Schools for the Deerfield, Illinois Public Schools, District 109 Our mission is: Provide an innovative educational experiences of the highest quality that engage, inspire and empower each student to excel and contribute in a changing world.
Facebook for the district as well as the six schools is also still a highly used communication medium.
Of late we have been expanding our communications via interview (blog radio interviews), and we are also starting a DPS109 Podcast (which you can subscribe to on the iTunes store). We’ll share more about the Podcast in subsequent blog posts; for now we are going to issue a podcast episode at least once a month, and more frequently when district news warrants it.
With this blog post I’m sharing one of these new forms of communication, an interview with one of the District 109 parent leaders, Mrs. Patty O’Machel. Patty has taken the lead on Disability Awareness Week planning and facilitation. This pro-social series of lessons and experiences help remove the fear that some people have when encountering people with differences. Patty is a leader that you should learn more about!
Patty and I were recently interviewed with Larry Jacobs … listen below:
Blog Talk Radio Interview with Larry Jacobs on the EDUCATION IN AMERICA: FOR PARENTS AND COMMUNITY radio show.
“The key to successful leadership today is influence, not authority.”
– Ken Blanchard
Recently I was on a video podcast interview with other educational leaders around the country. On the episode of the TechEducator Podcast I was one of three administrators interviewed with technology coaches & educators on the importance of having a strong relationship between the principal (or admin) and the technology coach. It was a great conversation about
leadership, technology, training, support, culture, relationships, recent leadership books, and overall educational excellence.
It was a treat joining Jeff, Sam and Jennifer!
The TechEducator Podcast is a weekly round table discussion about current topics in educational technology.
The video may start in the middle, if it does, just slide it back to the start.
About Our Guests
Jen Schwanke began her career as a language arts educator eighteen years ago. She has worked at both the elementary and secondary level as a teacher and administrator. A graduate instructor in educational leadership, she has written frequently for
literacy and educational publications and presents at literacy and leadership conferences. She is the author of the book, You’re The Principal: Now What? Strategies and Solutions for New School Leaders.
Michael Lubelfeld, Ed.D.
Mike currently serves as the superintendent of schools in the Deerfield, IL Public Schools (District 109). Mike earned his Doctor of Education in curriculum and instruction from Loyola University of Chicago, where his published dissertation was on Effective Instruction in Middle School Social Studies. He is also on the adjunct faculty at National Louis University in the Department of Educational Leadership. Mike has earned an IASA School of Advanced Leadership Fellowship and he has also graduated from the AASA National Superintendent Certification Program. He can be found on Twitter at @mikelubelfeld and he is the co-moderator of #suptchat – the superintendent educational chat on Twitter. He and Nick Polyak co-authored The Unlearning Leader: Leading for Tomorrow’s Schools Today (2017 Rowman & Littlefield). Mike has been married to his wife Stephanie for the past 13 years and they have two children.
District on Twitter: @DPS109
District Hashtag: #Engage109
LinkedIn: Michael Lubelfeld
Nick Polyak, Ed.D.
Dr. Polyak is the proud superintendent of the award-winning Leyden Community High School District 212. He earned his undergraduate degree from Augustana College in Rock Island, IL, his Masters from Governors State University, and his Ed.D. from Loyola University Chicago. Nick has been a classroom teacher and coach, a building and district level administrator, a School Board member, and a superintendent for the past seven years in both central Illinois and suburban Chicago. Nick has earned an IASA School of Advanced Leadership Fellowship and he also graduated from the AASA National Superintendent Certification Program. He can be found on Twitter at @npolyak and he is the co-moderator of #suptchat – the superintendent educational chat on Twitter. Nick has been married to his wife Kate for the past 16 years and they have four children.
District on Twitter: @leydenpride
District Hashtag: #leydenpride
LinkedIn: Nick Polyak
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School Districts Join Statewide Call for Legislature and Governor to Pass a State Budget
School chiefs call for budget, equitable funding and payment on past due bills
LOCATION – School District 109, Deerfield Public Schools, Superintendent Michael Lubelfeld, and more than 360 school chiefs across the state, representing more than one million students, are calling for the Illinois General Assembly to immediately pass a state budget, improve the state’s education funding formula, and pay school districts millions of dollars in unpaid bills this year. The state has been operating without a full budget for the past 22 months.
“I stand with more than 360 superintendents from across the state in a call for action,” “We need to end the impasse now and move forward with a budget that will serve the two million K-12 Illinois public school students who represent our future.”
The below list of more than 360 superintendents, representing more than one million students from across Illinois, have signed on to support a statewide initiative called “Pass Illinois’ Budget!”
The superintendents are specifically calling on members of the Illinois General Assembly and the Governor to do the following:
Immediately and with bipartisan support end the state budget impasse
Improve the state’s education funding formula and, invest in students and schools, including higher education, throughout the state
Pay school districts what they are owed this year
As members of the Illinois General Assembly return to Springfield following their spring break, school districts across the state are sharing their frustration with the state budget situation and using their social media accounts to call the state to #PassILBudget!
While K-12 education has benefited from a partially-funded state budget, Illinois schools, students, families, and communities will continue to suffer without a full state budget. Districts will suffer if Mandated Categoricals, state payments, which support special education, bilingual education, transportation, and other important services, do not get paid this year.
As of 5 p.m. Friday, April 21, the following superintendents have signed on to this call for action:
Mr. Tony Sanders, School District U-46 (39,963)
Dr. Karen Sullivan, Indian Prairie CUSD 204 (28,283)
Dr. Jeff Craig, Aurora West SD 129 (12,554)
Dr. Jennifer Garrison, Sandoval CUSD 501 (485)
Mr. Forrest Claypool, City of Chicago SD 299 (392,051)
Dr. Ehren Jarrett, Rockford Public School District 205 (28,459)
Dr. Lane Abrell, Plainfield SD 202 (27,877)
Mr. Fred Heid, CUSD 300 (20,926)
Dr. John Sparlin, Oswego CUSD 308 (18,500)
Dr. James Mitchem, Valley View CUSD 365U (17,020)
Mrs. Jennifer Gill, Springfield SD 186 (14,893)
Dr. Mark Daniel, McLean County USD 5 (13,751)
Dr. Sharon Kherat, Peoria Public School District 150 (13,297)
Dr. Donald Schlomann, St. Charles CUSD 303 (12,915)
Dr. Jeff Schuler, CUSD 200 (Wheaton) (12,876)
Dr. Brian Harris, Barrington CUSD 220 (8,850)
Mr. Jim Greenwald, Granite City CUSD 9 (6,200)
Mr. Arthur Culver, East St. Louis SD 189 (6,086)
Dr. Barry Reilly, Bloomington SD 87 (5,455)
Dr. Donald D. Owen, Urbana School District #116 (4,200)
Dr. Todd Stirn, Burlington Central 301 (4,055)
Mrs. Mary Havis, Berwyn South SD 100 (3,936)
Dr. Ben Martindale, North Chicago SD 187 (3,676)
Dr. Michael Lubelfeld, Deerfield SD 109 (2,973)
Dr. Greggory Fuerstenau, Taylorville CUSD 3 (2,628)
Mr. Mike Gauch, Harrisburg CUSD 3 (2,054)
Mr. Chuck Lane, Centralia HSD 200 (931)
Mr. David Rademacher- Patoka CUSD 100 (241)
Mr. Kerry Herdes- South Central CUD 401 (649)
Mr. Matt Renaud- Raccoon CONS SD 1 (234)
Mr. Craig Clark- Centralia SD 135 (1,337)
Mr. John Consolino, Iuka CCSD 7 (209)
Mr. Ralph Grimm, Galesburg CUSD 205 (4,542)
Mr. Kristin Humphries, East Moline SD 37 (2,804)
Mr. Brad Skertich, Southwestern CUSD 9 (1,512)
Mr. Rich Well, Vandalia CUSD 203 (1,536)
Mr. Dan Cox, Staunton CUSD #6 (1,273)
Mr. Tim Branon, Central City SD 133 (321)
Mr. Robin Brooks, Selmaville CCSD 10 (246)
Mr. Brad Detering, Salem CHSD 600 (736)
Ms. Leslie Foppe, Salem SD 111 (1,044)
Dr. David Lett, Pana CUSD 8 (1,314)
Mr. Jeff Humes, Odin PSD 722 (301)
Mr. Fred Lamkey, Edinburg CUSD 4 (289)
Mr. Chris McCann, Kell Cons. SD #2 (114)
Mr. David Schulte, Irvington CCSD #11 (58)
Dr. Melissa Kaczkowski, Roselle SD 12 (708)
Dr. John Butts, Medinah SD 11 (645)
Dr. Susan Homes, Smithton CCSD 130 (518)
Dr. Kristen Kendrick-Weikle, Warrensburg-Latham CUSD 11 (953)
Mr. Gary Miller, Momence CUSD 1 (1,180)
Mr. Daniel Brue, Meridian CUSD 15 (1,035)
Dr. Scott Doerr, Nokomis CUSD 22 (640)
Dr. Andrew Brooks, Delavan CUSD 703 (474)
Dr. Kerry L. Cox, Carrollton CUSD #1 (601)
Dr. Lisa Hichens, Batavia USD 101 (6,022)
Mr. Ryan Heavner, Greenview CUSD 200 (243)
Mr. David Chavira, East Coloma-Nelson CESD 20 (291)
Mr. Andy Richmond, Carbon Cliff-Barstow SD 36 (304)
Dr. DeAnn Heck, Central A&M CUD 21 (771)
Mr. Victor White, Prairieview-Ogden CCSD 197 (243)
Mr. Brad Turner, Mulberry Grove CUSD 1 (425)
Dr. Lori Franke-Hopkins, Jersey CUSD 100 (2,556)
Mr. Todd Pence, St. Joseph CCSD 169 (875)
Ernie Fowler, Nashville CHSD #99 (404)
Dr. Diane Cepela, Newark CCSD 66 (240)
Mr. Scott Watson, Bismarck Henning CUSD (909)
Mr. Shannon Bumann, AlWood CUSD 225 (390)
Dr. Chad Wagner, Elmwood CUSD 322 (705)
Dr. Chad Allison, Illinois Valley Central USD 321 (2,167)
Dr. Lynn Panega, Lake Park High School District 108 (2,642)
Dr. Patrick Anderson, Wood River-Hartford ESD 15 (749)
Mr. Erik Van Hoveln, Windsor CUSD #1 (380)
Mrs. Brenda Donahue, Marseilles ESD 150 (594)
Mr. Kenneth Schwengel, Arthur Community Unit SD #305 (1,251)
Dr. Lance Thurman, Riverton CUSD 14 (1,427)
Mr. Darryl Hogue, River Bend CUSD 2 (982)
Mr. William Faller, Pecatonica CUSD 321 (898)
Mrs. Sandra Kabat, Farrington CCSD 99 (75)
Mr. Jim Littleford, Charleston CUSD 1 (2,860)
Mr. Rolf Sivertsen, Canton Union SD 66 (2,604)
Mr. Christopher Grode, Murphysboro CUSD 186 (2,138)
Mr. Edward Fletcher, Monmouth-Roseville CUSD 238 (1,708)
Dr. Roger Alvey, Illini Bluffs CUSD 327 (961)
Dr. Scott Dearman, Deer Creek-Mackinaw CUSD #701 (1,100)
Mrs. Dee Scott, Casey-Westfield CUSD 4C (893)
Dr. Douglas Wood, Ball-Chatham CUSD 5 (4,797)
Mr. Tad Everett, Sterling CUSD #5 (3,458)
Dr. Kevin Cogdill, Marissa CUSD 40 (617)
Dr. Christine A. Sefcik, Grant Community HSD 124 (1,912)
Cathie Pezanoski, Elwood CCSD #203 (380)
Ms. Drusilla Lobmaster, Ludlow CCSD 142 (80)
Dr. Kimako Patterson, Prairie-Hills ESD 144 (2,563)
Dr. David Moyer, Elmhurst SD 205 (8,436)
Dr. Kevin Suchinski, Hillside SD 93 (508)
Mr. Larry Lovel, Trico CUSD #176 (963)
Mr. Michael Smith, Tuscola CUSD 301 (981)
Mr. Brian Brooks, St. Joseph Ogden CHSD 305 (470)
Mrs. Kathy Countryman, Sycamore CUSD 427 (3,795)
Dr. Jay Morrow, United Township High School District #30 (1,712)
Mr. Aaron Hopper, Panhandle CUSD 2 (500)
Dr. Mike Oberhaus, Rock Island SD 41 (6,767)
Dr. John Burkey, Huntley Community SD 158 (9,473)
Mr. Jeff Hinman, Tremont CUSD #702 (930)
Dr. Art Fessler, Community Consolidated SD 59 (6,902)
Dr. Judy Wiegand, Champaign CUSD #4 (9,951)
Dr. Jon Bartelt, Bloomingdale SD13 (1,291)
Dr. Jim Carlson, Seneca Township HSD 160 (448)
Mrs. Kelle Bunch, Liberty CUSD 2 (658)
Dr. Lori James-Gross, Unity Point CCSD #140 (705)
Mr. Geoff A. Schoonover, Cornell CCSD 426 (102)
Dr. Mike Schiffman, Freeport SD 145 (4,118)
Dr. Kevin Russell, Chicago Ridge School Dist. 127.5 (1,505)
Dr. Michael Connolly, Keeneyville ESD 20 (1,525)
Dr. Nick Polyak, Leyden CHSD 212 (3,375)
Mrs. Robin Becker, Germantown SD #60 (265)
Mr. Norm Tracy, Villa Grove CUSD 302 (670)
Dr. Dale Mitchell, Homewood SD 153 (1,970)
Dr. Lynette Zimmer, Lake Villa CCSD 41 (2,759)
Dr. Timothy Shimp, Yorkville CUSD 115 (5,980)
Mr. David Fults, Willow Grove SD 46 (166)
Mr. Wes Olson, Bond County CUSD 2 (1,901)
Mr. Bill Wrenn, Midland CUSD 7 (706)
Mr. David Thomas and Mr. Alan Estes, Waltonville CUSD#1 (379)
Mrs. Melissa Ritter, Ramsey CUSD #204 (456)
Dr. Bill Shields, Community Consolidated SD 93 (3,821)
For almost two years, Illinois has operated with just a partial budget for education and a “stopgap” budget for most everything else, leading to cuts at local government entities, community service organizations and education agencies that support our families and communities. Even though education has been funded, schools and students still suffer due to the lack of certainty, inequitable funding and current unpaid bills from the state.
Let’s work together to #PassIllinoisBudget.
Illinois Budget Impasse FAQ
Q: How long has Illinois been without a full state budget?
A: As of April 24, 2017 we have operated more than 22 months without a full state budget.
Q: What does the budget impasse mean?
A: The country’s fifth-largest state has been operating with continuing appropriations and court-ordered spending, while the pile of unpaid bills grows to nearly $13 billion. The state has approved a partial budget for education and stopgap or band-aid measures for most everything else. This has meant frozen and reduced budgets at local government entities, community organizations, and education agencies that aim to support our families and all sectors of society. Without a budget we all suffer.
Q: How does the lack of a state budget impact the services provided?
A: School districts launched Pass Illinois’ Budget! in late April when school chiefs should already know their financial revenue situation for Fiscal Year 2018. Like any business, school districts need to know several months – preferably more – in advance how much money they’ll receive so that education leaders and elected board members can make thoughtful spending decisions, from hiring staff to allocations for curriculum, maintenance and repairs, and much more for the coming school year.
Q: Where does Illinois school funding currently come from?
A: The state’s education budget is primarily made up of local revenue, primarily property taxes, state funds, and federal funds.
Q: What percentage of public school funding is Illinois responsible for and how much does it cover?
A: The state, by constitutional mandate, has the primary responsibility for funding its public schools but has never come close to covering even half the cost. Illinois ranks 50th in the nation for providing state funds for education.
Q: What is the problem with the current school funding formula?
A: The current funding formula does not adequately and equitably fund education in Illinois.
Q: Have there been any proposed solutions to fix the school funding formula?
A: There are some proposed solutions, but all require the state to pass a budget with revenue to support it.
Q: Why is the state behind on payments to school districts and which payments?
A: The state has delayed payments because there is not enough revenue being received by the state to cover the expenditures that are due. These unpaid bills are part of what’s called “Mandated Categoricals” and include funding for special education, bilingual education, transportation, and other important services.
Q: What are school leaders doing about the state’s financial situation?
A: More than 360 superintendents (as of 5 p.m. April 21) are calling on the Illinois General Assembly and Governor Rauner to do the following:
Immediately, and with bipartisan support, end the state budget impasse.
Improve the state’s education funding formula and invest in students and schools, including higher education institutions.
Pay school districts what they are owed this year.
Q: What can parents of public school students and other Illinois residents do?
“Make sure your worst enemy doesn’t live between your own two ears.”
– Laird Hamilton
In this post I’m sharing a TED talk that I enjoyed, and I believe serves as a good reminder for our fast “immediate” world. Ari Wallach’s talk caused me to think about reflection, he asks …”to what end”, how far out do we think? The speaker, Ari Wallach has a good message. Reactions/Responses are always welcome.
Tomorrow I’m joining hundreds of other Illinois Superintendents with Tweets, emails, blog posts, etc. in support of a LONG TERM IL funding solution; for too long we in IL Education have been victims of the short term.
So I’ve been “futuring,” which is a term I made up —
about three seconds ago. I’ve been futuring for about 20 years, and when I first started, I would sit down with people, and say, “Hey, let’s talk 10, 20 years out.” And they’d say, “Great.” And I’ve been seeing that time horizon get shorter and shorter and shorter, so much so that I met with a CEO two months ago and I said — we started our initial conversation. He goes, “I love what you do. I want to talk about the next six months.”
We have a lot of problems that we are facing. These are civilizational-scale problems. The issue though is, we can’t solve them using the mental models that we use right now to try and solve these problems. Yes, a lot of great technical work is being done, but there is a problem that we need to solve for a priori, before, if we want to really move the needle on those big problems. “Short-termism.” Right? There’s no marches. There’s no bracelets. There’s no petitions that you can sign to be against short-termism. I tried to put one up, and no one signed. It was weird.
But it prevents us from doing so much. Short-termism, for many reasons, has pervaded every nook and cranny of our reality. I just want you to take a second and just think about an issue that you’re thinking, working on. It could be personal, it could be at work or it could be move-the-needle world stuff, and think about how far out you tend to think about the solution set for that.
Because short-termism prevents the CEO from buying really expensive safety equipment. It’ll hurt the bottom line. So we get the Deepwater Horizon. Short-termism prevents teachers from spending quality one-on-one time with their students. So right now in America, a high school student drops out every 26 seconds. Short-termism prevents Congress — sorry if there’s anyone in here from Congress —
or not really that sorry —
from putting money into a real infrastructure bill. So what we get is the I-35W bridge collapse over the Mississippi a few years ago, 13 killed. It wasn’t always like this. We did the Panama Canal. We pretty much have eradicated global polio. We did the transcontinental railroad, the Marshall Plan. And it’s not just big, physical infrastructure problems and issues. Women’s suffrage, the right to vote. But in our short-termist time, where everything seems to happen right now and we can only think out past the next tweet or timeline post, we get hyper-reactionary.
So what do we do? We take people who are fleeing their war-torn country, and we go after them. We take low-level drug offenders, and we put them away for life. And then we build McMansions without even thinking about how people are going to get between them and their job. It’s a quick buck.
Now, the reality is, for a lot of these problems, there are some technical fixes, a lot of them. I call these technical fixes sandbag strategies. So you know there’s a storm coming, the levee is broken, no one’s put any money into it, you surround your home with sandbags. And guess what? It works. Storm goes away, the water level goes down, you get rid of the sandbags, and you do this storm after storm after storm. And here’s the insidious thing. A sandbag strategy can get you reelected. A sandbag strategy can help you make your quarterly numbers.
Now, if we want to move forward into a different future than the one we have right now, because I don’t think we’ve hit — 2016 is not peak civilization.
There’s some more we can do. But my argument is that unless we shift our mental models and our mental maps on how we think about the short, it’s not going to happen.
So what I’ve developed is something called “longpath,” and it’s a practice. And longpath isn’t a kind of one-and-done exercise. I’m sure everyone here at some point has done an off-site with a lot of Post-It notes and whiteboards, and you do — no offense to the consultants in here who do that — and you do a long-term plan, and then two weeks later, everyone forgets about it. Right? Or a week later. If you’re lucky, three months. It’s a practice because it’s not necessarily a thing that you do. It’s a process where you have to revisit different ways of thinking for every major decision that you’re working on. So I want to go through those three ways of thinking.
So the first: transgenerational thinking. I love the philosophers: Plato, Socrates, Habermas, Heidegger. I was raised on them. But they all did one thing that didn’t actually seem like a big deal until I really started kind of looking into this. And they all took, as a unit of measure for their entire reality of what it meant to be virtuous and good, the single lifespan, from birth to death. But here’s a problem with these issues: they stack up on top of us, because the only way we know how to do something good in the world is if we do it between our birth and our death. That’s what we’re programmed to do. If you go to the self-help section in any bookstore, it’s all about you. Which is great, unless you’re dealing with some of these major issues. And so with transgenerational thinking, which is really kind of transgenerational ethics, you’re able to expand how you think about these problems, what is your role in helping to solve them.
Now, this isn’t something that just has to be done at the Security Council chamber. It’s something that you can do in a very kind of personal way. So every once in a while, if I’m lucky, my wife and I like to go out to dinner, and we have three children under the age of seven. So you can imagine it’s a very peaceful, quiet meal.
So we sit down and literally all I want to do is just eat and chill, and my kids have a completely and totally different idea of what we’re going to be doing. And so my first idea is my sandbag strategy, right? It’s to go into my pocket and take out the iPhone and give them “Frozen” or some other bestselling game thing. And then I stop and I have to kind of put on this transgenerational thinking cap. I don’t do this in the restaurant, because it would be bizarre, but I have to — I did it once, and that’s how I learned it was bizarre.
And you have to kind of think, “OK, I can do this.” But what is this teaching them? So what does it mean if I actually bring some paper or engage with them in conversation? It’s hard. It’s not easy, and I’m making this very personal. It’s actually more traumatic than some of the big issues that I work on in the world — entertaining my kids at dinner. But what it does is it connects them here in the present with me, but it also — and this is the crux of transgenerational thinking ethics — it sets them up to how they’re going to interact with their kids and their kids and their kids.
Second, futures thinking. When we think about the future, 10, 15 years out, give me a vision of what the future is. You don’t have to give it to me, but think in your head. And what you’re probably going to see is the dominant cultural lens that dominates our thinking about the future right now: technology. So when we think about the problems, we always put it through a technological lens, a tech-centric, a techno-utopia, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but it’s something that we have to really think deeply about if we’re going to move on these major issues, because it wasn’t always like this. Right? The ancients had their way of thinking about what the future was. The Church definitely had their idea of what the future could be, and you could actually pay your way into that future. Right? And luckily for humanity, we got the scientific revolution. From there, we got the technology, but what has happened — And by the way, this is not a critique. I love technology. Everything in my house talks back to me, from my children to my speakers to everything.
But we’ve abdicated the future from the high priests in Rome to the high priests of Silicon Valley. So when we think, well, how are we going to deal with climate or with poverty or homelessness, our first reaction is to think about it through a technology lens. And look, I’m not advocating that we go to this guy. I love Joel, don’t get me wrong, but I’m not saying we go to Joel. What I’m saying is we have to rethink our base assumption about only looking at the future in one way, only looking at it through the dominant lens. Because our problems are so big and so vast that we need to open ourselves up.
So that’s why I do everything in my power not to talk about the future. I talk about futures. It opens the conversation again. So when you’re sitting and thinking about how do we move forward on this major issue — it could be at home, it could be at work, it could be again on the global stage — don’t cut yourself off from thinking about something beyond technology as a fix because we’re more concerned about technological evolution right now than we are about moral evolution. And unless we fix for that, we’re not going to be able to get out of short-termism and get to where we want to be.
The final, telos thinking. This comes from the Greek root. Ultimate aim and ultimate purpose. And it’s really asking one question: to what end? When was the last time you asked yourself: To what end? And when you asked yourself that, how far out did you go? Because long isn’t long enough anymore. Three, five years doesn’t cut it. It’s 30, 40, 50, 100 years.
In Homer’s epic, “The Odyssey,” Odysseus had the answer to his “what end.” It was Ithaca. It was this bold vision of what he wanted — to return to Penelope. And I can tell you, because of the work that I’m doing, but also you know it intuitively — we have lost our Ithaca. We have lost our “to what end,” so we stay on this hamster wheel. And yes, we’re trying to solve these problems, but what comes after we solve the problem? And unless you define what comes after, people aren’t going to move. The businesses — this isn’t just about business — but the businesses that do consistently, who break out of short-termism not surprisingly are family-run businesses. They’re transgenerational. They’re telos. They think about the futures. And this is an ad for Patek Philippe. They’re 175 years old, and what’s amazing is that they literally embody this kind of longpathian sense in their brand, because, by the way, you never actually own a Patek Philippe, and I definitely won’t —
unless somebody wants to just throw 25,000 dollars on the stage. You merely look after it for the next generation.
So it’s important that we remember, the future, we treat it like a noun. It’s not. It’s a verb. It requires action. It requires us to push into it. It’s not this thing that washes over us. It’s something that we actually have total control over. But in a short-term society, we end up feeling like we don’t. We feel like we’re trapped. We can push through that.
Now I’m getting more comfortable in the fact that at some point in the inevitable future, I will die. But because of these new ways of thinking and doing, both in the outside world and also with my family at home, and what I’m leaving my kids, I get more comfortable in that fact. And it’s something that a lot of us are really uncomfortable with, but I’m telling you, think it through. Apply this type of thinking and you can push yourself past what’s inevitably very, very uncomfortable.
And it all begins really with yourself asking this question: What is your longpath? But I ask you, when you ask yourself that now or tonight or behind a steering wheel or in the boardroom or the situation room: push past the longpath, quick, oh, what’s my longpath the next three years or five years? Try and push past your own life if you can because it makes you do things a little bit bigger than you thought were possible.
Yes, we have huge, huge problems out there. With this process, with this thinking, I think we can make a difference. I think you can make a difference, and I believe in you guys.