Because of the networks of the Broad Residency and Denver Public Schools, I have had the opportunity to connect with several smart, entrepreneurial souls starting consultancies in education. In the last conversation with a friend, we discussed how I figured out what I wanted to do, who I work with, and what keeps me going. I said a sentence out loud that defined my working goal, and that was “I want to be the consultant that I’d want to use.” When I was at DPS, I had the chance to work with several consultants who were smart, diligent, good listeners, and value-oriented. I also had the chance to work with several who were not. I’ve worked on different projects – human capital projects, learning events, employee searches, accountability system advice – but the Golden Rule applied throughout. I want to be the consultant that I’d want to work with.

What that means to me is that I want to be a good listener and identify the core goal, as well as the cultural aspects that will enable my work to seem like the organization’s own. I want to deliver on time, in a format that is professional and ready to be printed. If I get to help generate ideas, I take the time to review my experiences and do research for best practices, and provide artifacts to go with my suggestions. If I get to run meetings, I want to provide fresh examples and relevant stories. I am successful in my work if I can help the organizations I partner with own their own work, with a little nudge from me. There’s no better guiding principle for me.