Dartmouth Associates

Head of School: A View from the Middle

Having been a Head of School, Director of Admission, an Development, I understand the united front that must be presented to the board by the head and the revenue producing departments of the school. Obviously the board wants to have faith in you, the head, to manage these departments and maintain a steady stream of funding each year.  Furthermore, it is the Admission Department that brings in the lions share of the annual budget. That being said it is obviously crucial that you know the ongoing admissions stats, at very least monthly.

This book was written to both give your Director an entrepreneurial mind set as well as a new set of tools to be better prepared to help you school thrive in 2021 and beyond. Essentially, we want your Director to be allowed to have more latitude in his scope of decisions making and at the same time take a stronger role in managing the glandular expectations of admissions activity. Being a strong believer in the axiom…” you can’t manage what you can’t measure” it is only reasonable that you should be able to  ask for some specifics about what activities were pursued by the team and what tangible results they achieved related to the admissions goals for the year. Seeing as how you need to be prepared for the random call from your board president asking about the “numbers”

But however, you should be both supportive and ready to collaborate when your director says that they are trying a new marketing tactic heretofore only used by corporations. You director must feel that you understand that as the new Admission Entrepreneur persona, I am asking , that besides spending far more time and energy preparing to execute activities that reach specific objectives for every persona and stage of the admissions funnel, I also expect that offices make regular, outgoing calls to create relationships with new potential referrals sources to send more potential inquires into the top of the funnel that has been shrinking over the last three years.  Essentially, have asked them to look at their office as their own company that they must oversee it’s total success, and as an entrepreneur be prepared to make the necessary marketing and recruiting pivots to ensure the meeting of enrollment goals. My Results Oriented Recruiting system forges a cultural paradigm shift from the past admission strategies of spending more money on the same approaches and expecting different results…I call it “The Insanity Strategy”

This year over half the admission offices reported declining numbers from last year and I predict it will only get worse. So, as America continues to struggle economically in the short term, foreign embassies tighten visa restrictions and fewer kids are being born, I ask that you, admission, and the board continue to have discussions about the new challenges to schools and the best ways to find the right balance of mission appropriate students and supporting the core program.

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