New and Different Times Require New and Different Playbooks In Schools, Workplaces, and Communities

Challenges in 2020 have created a new normal that is different and strange. Strange because when you think about it, pandemics are not new, protests are not new, riots are not new, racial tensions are not new, politics are not new, online learning is not new, remote working is not new, responding to violence is not new…but still 2020 feels different and 2020 is the beginning of a new normal.

2020 is also making it painfully clear to almost everyone that the same old playbooks and strategies are struggling mightily with all the new and different challenges. Old playbooks are struggling to keep up with increasing COVID-19 liabilities and continuous phase updates as well as soaring numbers of incidents involving violence, homicides, abuse, suicides, and numerous other increasing incidents and challenges. As incidents and challenges mount, reputational damages and widening trust gaps will take years and millions of dollars to rebuild unless new and different actions are taken.


When you pause and think about it, it makes sense why old playbooks, old strategies, and old technologies are not keeping pace. For example, with everything happening in 2020 can you imagine trying to keep pace if you were still lugging around a Commodore 64 (released in 1982) and an old flip phone (released in 1996)?

Now before you scoff at the idea that leaders of schools, workplaces, and communities could be using old playbooks and technologies from the 1980s and the 1990s, think about the following examples.

Plausible Deniability. Wrongfully believing there is more liability in knowing about pre-incident indicators (warning signs, red flags, concerning behaviors, leakage, etc.) and incidents than not knowing is a big mistake in the new normal. (Read my post all the way back in 2014 to learn more.)

Sadly, way too many leaders today cite Plausible Deniability as an excuse for not wanting to know about pre-incident indicators and incidents to justify their inaction or lack of awareness. Plausible Deniability was a term created by CIA in the early 1960s regarding the withholding of information from senior officials to protect them from unwanted repercussions if illegal or unpopular activities became public knowledge. The term Plausible Deniability is outdated and has become a huge and expensive liability as new legal strategies are winning big settlements by showing how schools and organizations ignored red flags (pre-incident indicators are almost always known by someone) and reasonably foreseeable consequences.

Community Policing. Increasing violence, crimes, abuse, chaos, and other challenges are creating serious and costly consequences in most communities across the nation and exposing how and why Community Policing is not keeping pace with all these new and different challenges.

Did you know Community Policing originated during the civil rights movement in the early 1960s and was created to repair relations and distrust between police and community members, especially along racial lines? Based on current events and strained relations in communities across the nation, it seems clear Community Policing’s old playbook is not the best solution for the new normal.


Communities, community members, and community leaders need a new and different playbook for today’s new and different challenges.

Community leaders should immediately update and upgrade their old playbooks and strategies from the 1960s (1970s, 1980s, 1990s, etc.) to utilize new research-based and proven playbooks, strategies, and technologies to keep pace with 2020 and the new normal. But don’t be fooled… new playbooks, strategies, and technologies are not old flip phones with bells, whistles, and some bling or old strategies with a new cover page.

A lot of leaders comfortable with the old playbooks will try to hold on, but just because the Commodore 64 and the flip phone worked at one time, and even if you still had them today they might “still turn on and function”; that does not mean these technologies will deliver what you need today.  It is the same with Plausible Deniability and Community Policing, they worked at one time, but these and numerous other old strategies and old technologies are not delivering what you need with numerous and different challenges you are facing today. So, what does deliver what you need today? A new playbook.


Awareity’s research reveals gaps, silos, and disconnects.

Awareity’s 20+ years of extensive research revealed an overabundance of shortcomings as well as numerous common gaps, silos, and disconnects due to old playbooks and old technologies.

Awareity utilized extensive data from our research and from numerous other studies to create strategies and technologies that targeted hundreds of common and dangerous gaps, silos, and disconnects. Awareity’s strategies and technologies are different on purpose because many of the same gaps, silos, and disconnects from the 1960s continued to be exposed in tragedy after tragedy in the 1990s and 2000s.

Stop the insanity. Different results require different strategies and technologies.

Different results require different strategies and technologies because using the same old strategies and old technologies and expecting different results is… insanity.  Stop the insanity and contact Awareity today to learn more about different strategies and different technologies that are proven to deliver better results in these different times.

Ready to learn more about the new playbook?

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