Sometimes, this tension can drive people apart. Cliques can form, huddles happen, and everyone gets more isolated. Or, on the contrary, people get more irritable and take out their stress on each other.
I am so grateful that I have seen the opposite. In my office over the past week, there has been a lot more coming together. Everyone is being supportive of each other! There's something about all being in a situation together that opens up a deeper level of community.
One of the coolest things about this time, for me, has been the opportunity to engage in deeper conversations with people that I don't usually talk with. We are a large district, and I've only been in my role for about six months...so there are several people who I have never had more than a surface conversation with. I've appreciated the chance to get to know my coworkers much better as we talk about our hopes and fears for the future. In a field where relationships are key, even the talk about these changes has broken down some of the walls and allowed us to form stronger relationships than we had a week or two ago!
Times of stress are when culture really gets tested. Culture is sneaky - it is built slowly, moment by moment, and you don't always realize that it is there. Until something comes. Although I haven't been here for that long, it is clear to me that the culture has been built to help us come together, rather than come apart, during this time.
I want to end by sharing a video I shared to start a meeting on Friday - a good reminder to all of us that we are better together!