Powerful Communication Practices that Build Connection

Providing real time and authentic conversation is critical to our communication strategy.

– Dr. Jennifer Lowery, Superintendent, Tea Area School District

South Dakota Superintendent Jennifer Lowery was recently featured in AASA’s School Administrator magazine to share how the Tea Area School District has served as its community’s hub and heart during crises. In this roundtable, Dr. Gayle Juneau-Butler was joined by Superintendent Dr. Jennifer Lowery and Business Manager Chris Esping to share how Tea Area School District focuses on decision-making that sustains people and deepens relationships.

During the roundtable, Gayle and Tea Area School District leaders shared their District’s progress through the Organizational Excellence and Improvement Maturity Model. They also shared how Tea Area School District is using powerful communication practices that build connection by:

  • Using story and example to connect team members to their purposes
  • Communicating with the right words at the right time to message effectively and sustain trust
  • Centralizing communication to ensure accuracy and timeliness in what people need to know

To view the recording, enter the recording passcode when prompted.
Passcode: roundtable1!

Roundtable Resources

Customer listening

Organizational Feedback Loop | 9P

Organizations committed to continuous improvement frequently ask their stakeholders for feedback. Interacting with stakeholders and gathering feedback provides leaders with valuable information about areas of success and opportunities for improvement. The use of a feedback loop engages stakeholders, builds trust and increases engagement throughout the organization.

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PDSA Model

Plan Do Study Act (PDSA) | 9P

How do you know if the change is an improvement? Use the Plan, Do, Study, Act model continuously to test and implement the system improvements.


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communicate with team

Communication that Increases Support of Decisions | Studer Education

People have an easier time trusting and supporting decisions when communication about them is clear and transparent. The use of key words to communicate our decision-making process builds trust and confidence in our ability to lead a tough situation. This clear communication also deepens our relationships and access to information that supports our next round of decision-making.

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Tea Area School District’s Standards of Excellence

tea area school district's standards of excellence

Communicate with Greater Clarity: Leveraging the Execution Triangle

This toolkit focuses on how to leverage the principles of the Studer Education Execution Triangle to enhance the clarity of your written and spoken communication. The Execution Triangle is particularly effective when communicating at a time of crisis or when you are delivering bad news. That being said, the tools in this toolkit are useful for any message that must be delivered at any time. If you want to communicate with greater clarity, the three key principles in this toolkit will assist you in developing and deploying your message.


Toolkits are developed by our experts to guide leaders with a framework for complex solutions. View and download our interactive toolkits on communicating using the Execution Triangle, results rollout, execution and improvement, inclusive conversations and more.

Future Roundtable Sessions

Each week, our coaches lead a discussion with a community of leaders who are facing similar challenges. These 60-minute sessions are free and allow opportunities to learn from expert leadership coaches and have candid conversations with other leaders about barriers, share successful practices and re-center on what works.

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