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Lessons Learned
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Lessons Learned
Shaping Relationships and the Culture of the Workplace



June 2003 | 144 pages | Corwin

"Roland S. Barth's warm and wise book deserves to be kept close at hand. Witty, entertaining, instructive, and poignant, Barth's stories will get you thinking, and the 'working rules' salted throughout the book will help you navigate the deceptive shoals and powerful tides we all have to deal with at work."
Lee G. Bolman, Marion Bloch/Missouri Chair in Leadership
University of Missouri-Kansas City
Author of Leading With Soul and Reframing the Path to School Leadership

Lessons Learned is an insightful, funny, moving look at commonalties between life at sea and life in the schoolhouse. More than any other Barth book, this one exposes Roland for what he really is—an avid sailor, loyal friend, life-long learner, and compassionate leader."
Milli Pierce, Director
The Principals' Center, Harvard Graduate School of Education

"This charming, humorous, and wise book teaches important lessons about relationships at work and at play. Once again, Barth has written a useful and invaluable book for teachers and principals alike."
Thomas J. Sergiovanni, Lillian Radford Professor of Education
Trinity University
Author of The Lifeworld of Leadership

"Barth's Lessons Learned is a powerful guide for defining the types of interpersonal relationships needed to bring about success."
Karen M. Dyer, Manager
Education Sector, Center for Creative Leadership
Author of The Intuitive Principal

In Lessons Learned, Roland S. Barth shares his often whimsical, but always thoughtful, reflections on relationships at sea and in the workplace. Drawing on his 40 years of experience on deck and in the schoolhouse, Barth shows us that these two worlds have more in common than we might expect—and that there is much to be learned about getting along with one another from both.

Our day-to-day exchanges with others are central to how we experience and perform in the workplace. Everyone wants to be a member of a high-performing team, be an effective leader, and work in an enlightened and empowering culture. Barth's seemingly simple stories of interactions among colleagues and companions provide rich, humorous, and often poignant insights into the subtlety and complexity of human relationships that shape teams and leaders. The resulting "rules" provide a practical and delightfully conversational guide to cultivating and fortifying working relationships.

Some lessons learned are obvious, others less so. Most of all, Barth provides a backdrop that invites us to reflect on our own stories so that we may better understand our own "lessons learned."


 
Preface
 
Acknowledgments
 
About the Author
 
Setting Sail
 
1. Have I Told You the One About...?
 
2. The Long Version
 
3. Shootin' the Breeze
 
4. The Fragile Ego
 
5. Who Am I?
 
6. Steer Clear
 
7. The Hand That Holds The Paintbrush
 
8. Strength or Weakness?
 
9. Good Though
 
10. Right or Wrong?
 
11. Held Harmless
 
12. On Balance
 
13. Loose Lips
 
14. Fatal Attraction
 
15. Going It Together
 
16. Captain's Orders
 
17. In Place
 
18. Inside Passage
 
19. Meetings at Bay
 
20. Skinflint Skippers
 
21. Both Feet In
 
22. Promises, Promises
 
23. Fair Winds
 
24. Can You Help Me?
 
Epilogue
 
Cruising Rules Glossary
 
Cruising Rules
 
Working Rules

"Few topics are more important than how school leaders can shape relationships and improve the culture of the workplace. In Lessons Learned, Roland Barth distills a lifetime of craft knowledge acquired both on the sea and in schools to provide readers with the guidance and wisdom that only such a reflective and insightful mind can provide. Barth advocates truth telling, and this wonderful book offers that rare and significant gift to its readers."

Dennis Sparks, Executive Director
National Staff Development Council

"School leaders will find treasures of wisdom in this profound, yet entertaining, easy to read, and witty account of Roland Barth's life as an educator and sailor, and his ability to connect the two experiences. The importance of creating a productive work culture through positive relationships remains Roland Barth's main message to educators. In Lessons Learned, he skillfully uses the navigation metaphor to draw simple, yet profound lessons rooted in his experience as a teacher, principal, and sailor."

Gerald N. Tirozzi, Executive Director
National Association of Secondary School Principals

"Lessons Learned is an insightful, funny, moving look at commonalties between life at sea and life in the schoolhouse. Using his head and heart, Roland Barth applies the many lessons learned from sailing (Cruising Rules) to the work of school leadership (Working Rules). Combining the two challenging practices makes for much shared wisdom and serious fun."

Milli Pierce, Director, The Principals' Center
Harvard Graduate School of Education

"If you’re curious about how to strengthen and sustain relationships in life, you’ll relish Lessons Learned. If you are a school leader who wants to build strong organizational culture, you’ll find it essential."

Jon Saphier, President
Research for Better Teaching

"Barth reminds us that relationship building is still key to creating and sustaining high performing schools. In this way, he walks the reader through the many practical strategies educators can—and must—use to grapple with the continuous adaptive challenges inherent in learning communities."

Linda Phillips Hollomon, Executive Director
Atlanta Public Schools, GA

"Whether a sailor or a school administrator, on a boat or in a boardroom, out to sea or ashore, Barth’s Lessons Learned is a powerful guide for defining the types of interpersonal relationships needed to bring about success."

Karen M. Dyer, Manager, Education Sector
Center for Creative Leadership

"Barth has mined his own experiences for a wonderful collection of tales that use open-water sailing as a powerful metaphor for work and life. By turns witty, entertaining, instructive and poignant, Barth’s stories will get you thinking, and the 'working rules' salted throughout the book will help you navigate the deceptive shoals and powerful tides we all have to deal with at work."

Lee G. Bolman, Marion Bloch/Missouri Chair in Leadership
University of Missouri-Kansas City

"This charming, humorous, and wise book teaches important lessons about relationships at work and at play. Once again, Barth has written a useful and invaluable book for teachers and principals alike."

Thomas J. Sergiovanni, Lillian Radford Professor of Education
Trinity University

"I found myself wanting to steal all his quotes and rules, and fill them in with my own stories. He left me making New Year’s resolutions and then laughing at myself. Roland Barth turns reflective craftsmanship into a revealing and wonderful venture, as he scans deeply over and under troubled waters, and comes up each time with a new way to see an old dilemma."

Deborah Meier, Co-principal
Mission Hill School, Boston, MA

"Roland Barth’s Lessons Learned is a revelation about 'school' and those who practice it. To read it, every cruising rule, working rule and scene, is to be inspired, heartened, startled, delighted. Barth talks to us with astounding candor and humor and astuteness."

David Mallery, Director of Professional Development
National Association of Independent Schools

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Preface


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