The importance of strong values


Words: Ms Linda Douglas, principal

You may have listened to Simon Sinek’s talk Millennials in the Workplace as it did the rounds on social media. It has some important messages for all of us and is well worth a listen. Understanding the addiction to social media and the effect it is having on people, particularly our youngest, is essential.

Simon discusses the addiction, the instant gratification, the lack of engagement in the present and the way it can hamper development of deep and meaningful relationships, the building of social skills and confidence. And the use of the word addiction is deliberate and necessary. Swiping right instead of engaging in the highs, lows and intricacies of falling in love is a good example given by Simon that social media usage needs to be well managed and balanced. As is the fact that we are increasingly addicted to checking our phones and devices before and during meetings, boosting our own importance yet missing vital opportunities to deeply engage, be mindful and strengthen our relationships.

The instant gratification of social media is undermining our ability to stick to something, to show grit and persistence. Simon talks about people giving up jobs as they don’t feel they are making an impact after only eight months; that we want to get to the summit without climbing the mountain; that we are losing sight of what it really means to have an impact.

Most importantly, he talks about the environment: that we need to develop environments where we can help the next generation build confidence and the skills of co-operation and collaboration; places where they can overcome the challenges of the digital world and find balance; to gain an understanding of the fulfilment you get when working for something over a long period of time; and the fact that we can only improve our world with a truly sustained effort.

In his book Together is Better, Simon notes that a team is not a group of people working together, it is a group of people who trust each other. We need to remember that when we encourage our girls to work collaboratively. How do we ensure they develop trust in each other first?

He reminds us that working hard for something we don’t care about is called stress, while working hard for something we care about is called passion. How do we ensure that learning is relevant, challenging, meaningful and engaging for our girls so we ignite their passion?

If we fight against something we focus on our hate, but if we fight for something we care about we focus on the things we love. This is what we need to engage our girls in if they are to make a difference in their world.

As a school community we have the ability to grow a strong future: the next generation. And in our work we can never underestimate the importance of strong values. They form the culture and very essence of Ruyton, a platform on which we build the future while we respect the past. They shape and define the Ruyton woman and the way she leads her life.

  • Character – to be resilient and to act with confidence and compassion
  • Citizenship – to affect positive change through civic and environmental action
  • Endeavour – to be curious, creative and courageous learners seeking to achieve personal best
  • Integrity – to live a life with honesty and virtue.

The Ruyton community lives by these values, providing support, role models and a sounding board for our girls as they make their mark in the world.

Want to know more about Ruyton? Have a look at their School Choice page by clicking here: Ruyton Girls School


As an independent, forward thinking girls’ school, Ruyton is committed to preparing girls for a lifetime of learning, leadership and […]

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