It won’t surprise you to know that communication and collaboration are two 21st Century Skills that I call on every day in my work with CTL, helping to spread the word about our work with schools. I work on print materials, videos and web content, and in all tasks I consult and engage in ongoing feedback with my colleagues here. But one recent project required four of us to refine communication and collaboration in a particularly fast and sharply focused way.
The task on our plate was to conceptualize and refine the script and visual layout for an approximately one-minute motion graphic animation designed to explain what we do at CTL–our video “elevator speech,” so to speak. We had to start by figuring out our message and communicating that clearly to the creative team at Boileau Communications Management of Holland, Michigan, whom we’d hired to produce the animated piece. We had to ask ourselves: What do we do, and for whom do we do it? What is our mission, and how do we fulfill it? What does our work look like, and how do we want potential clients and partners to view it?
Besides moving us toward completing a key marketing project, the process we engaged in to answer these questions also helped us to refine our organizational identity, and clarify our goals and objectives. There were in-office meetings and far-ranging conversations around tables, across desks, by phone, via email, and on two snowy days, in virtual hangouts. Ideas were batted back and forth, script drafts marked up, and images transformed, face to face and through shared digital documents. All told, many hours and much thought and discussion went into what, when finished, was 73 seconds that aims to present CTL’s unique approach to advancing excellence in teaching and school leadership.
In short, we emulated the kind of creative, collaborative, question-driven work that we help schools to do in general, and that we coach teachers to help students do through Project Based Learning.
Please view the finished animation above…and in the spirit of communication and collaboration, let us know what you think. Then learn more about working with CTL.