Things I Know 297 of 365: What I believed and what I did were out of sync

Espoused values represent the explicitly stated values and norms that are preferred by an organization. Enacted values, in contrast, reflect the values and norms that actually are exhibited or converted into employee behavior. Employees become cynical when management espouses one set of values and norms and then behaves in an inconsistent fashion.

– Robert Kreitner & Angelo Kinicki

I had a great conversation with Dean tonight. It led me to the following realization.

When I was teaching students reading, what I told myself and them was that I wanted to help them find the joy of reading that would lead to them being lifelong readers and thereby lifelong learners.

I learned last year, when I opened up the class to allowing students to read all books of their choice, was the difference between what I said and what I did.

By defining success as students reading, relating to and commenting on only the texts I saw fit, I was showing them I wanted them to be lifelong readers so long as they were lifelong readers of the books I liked. Oftentimes, this also meant lifelong readers of canonical books as well.

As soon as I opened up my practice to match the believe I’d been saying allowed to my students and myself, nearly all of them began voraciously reading whenever they could.

I hadn’t realized the misalignment of what I said I believed and what I had shown my students I believed until I talked to Dean. Thanks, Dean.

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