Higher education leaders are situated in a weird space between breaking the rules to achieve phenomenal success and following the rules of compliance for a variety of benefits.

Break the Rules Tussle

It is expected that higher education leaders break the rules. In order for there to be innovation, solutions, and new ideas at colleges and universities some new trails must be blazed — which requires breaking the rules to break through. And thus begins the tussle…

Higher education leaders are situated in a weird space between breaking or bending the rules to achieve phenomenal success (e.g., a new drug to fight illness, creating new technology) and following the rules of compliance for a variety of benefits (e.g., federal aid, accreditation).

Higher education leaders are situated in a weird space between breaking the rules to achieve phenomenal success and following the rules of compliance for a variety of benefits.

So which one is it? Should you break or follow the rules?

Picasso was well known for the phrase: Know the rules like a pro, so that you can break them like an artist.

I see the most success in accreditation reviews when college and university leaders break a few rules, but not a lot at once. Accreditation review teams are expecting higher education institutions to try new things, fail, and try again differently.

As a higher education leader, how are you getting to know the rules so that you can break them like an artist? Want some help breaking the rules? Let’s do it together.