ON STEALING IDEAS
As a senior citizen now retired, I sometimes reflect upon my ideas and creations that have been picked up and “owned” by others; my thoughts and point raised in conversation, sometimes in high places, for which others have taken the credit.
A number of years ago we had a dicey situation at my school of where asbestos was discovered in walls of modules. They had been previous “discovered“ in other schools resulting in a whole lot of community furore and angst.
I put into place as Principal certain strategies to manage the issue. The most major was making making sure that the community was kept fairly and intimately aware of what was going on and what arrangements have been put in place to safeguard children while overcoming the problem.
There was no negative publicity and everything went very smoothly. My processes and modus operandi well then take it on board (Without my knowledge) by the Department of Education Media and Marketing division. They developed a submission about how well “they” had managed the situation at my school and put together an application for recognition of “their” job well done on a public relations fun. This was submitted to the Public Relations Institute of Australia and Earned and award for a PR Job well done.
I only found out about all this many years later when in retirement I was doing some tracking around on the Department of Education website. I “discovered“ the work that had been done by media and marketing based on my experiences.
That stands out to me as probably the boldest representation of this nature.
There have been many other instances in addition to the foregoing. I’ll cite just one.
These days, the Australian Primary Principals Association has a “Principal for the Day” program where a student takes over the principles job in a school for the day. That little innovation came a good seven right years after I’d introduced the idea into my school and had been practising it annually as a program involving students.
I went one step further however. When a student at my place for the day, I took the student’s place for the day, returned to the classroom and became a kid. We used to get lots of media about the program, organised as it was with the student body by the Student Representative Council.
I’m glad the idea grew legs-but where did the idea come from! Especially as I said, the idea in the universal sense was picked up many years after it had been standard practice at my school.
I have no resentment about these things but an bemused by these sorts of happenings.