It is my distinct pleasure to write a letter of support and recommendation for Mr. Kevin Miller of VisionBound International. I have known Kevin for the past five years and I can say without hesitation that he provides some of, if not the best professional development for leaders that I have experienced in my twenty years of leadership in public education. As a school district superintendent I have attended or presented leadership seminars and professional development more times than I can count. Often these professional development opportunities are centered on current hot topics in education but actually offer little in the way of sustainable leadership skills and qualities. Exactly the opposite is true of Kevin Miller and his leadership training. When Kevin presents information on leadership it is authentic and meaningful and those in attendance will take positive tips to their practice that they will implement immediately. I have had the good fortune to work with Kevin in the development of my leadership teams in two different school districts. In both of these districts Kevin Miller has inspired and motivated our district directors, principals and vice principals. His work with us on Crucial Conversations, Crucial Confrontations, The Leadership Quotient and various other leadership modules has helped our team build extraordinary leadership practices.
Kevin Miller has the unique ability to lead leaders. In all of my experiences I have yet to see anyone who could command the attention of a room full of leaders the way that Kevin Miller does. Through his firsthand accounts, insightful stories and motivational narratives, Kevin is able to captivate and hold his audience like no other. I have literally seen grown men cry as they listen to Kevin’s account of true leadership under pressure. Because of his own leadership accounts, his audiences know that Kevin is speaking about a subject that he is an expert on. I know of no other leadership trainers that bring the passion to the table that Kevin does. He knows in his heart that the path to true change begins with the leader and Kevin’s strength lies in inspiring leaders to take charge and lead! It is truly an honor for me to know and work with Mr. Kevin Miller. I can without hesitation and with the highest accolades recommend Mr. Kevin Miller of VisionBound International as one of the premiere leadership gurus practicing today. If I can be of further help assistance please feel free to contact me at 208.578-5000.
— Dr. Lonnie Barber, Superintendent, Blaine County School District
I invited Kevin and the Crucial Conversations program to my leadership staff in the Tooele County School District as a professional development program and was excited with the results. My staff feels like it is one of the best training opportunities they have experienced. As administrators, we face these kinds of tough conversations on a daily, and sometimes hourly basis. The powerful tools and principles in the course give a solid set of skills that are enabling our administrators to handle these conversations with confidence. I am already seeing the effect in my own life and hearing great results from others. I believe it was one of the most powerful professional development tools we have ever experienced and I highly recommend it to any district. We are now using Kevin for a long-term monthly leadership development program using his Institute
— Michael C Johnsen, Superintendent, Tooele County School District
The Idaho Association of School Administrators has selected Kevin’s Extraordinary Educator Leadership Instutute as our flag-ship for developing hundreds of administrators throughout Idaho. We began this year with the Crucial Conversations course and selected modules from the leadership material. We based our selections based on his highly helpful web-based survey of teachers and administrators in Idaho. Based on the success so far, we are bringing in Crucial Confrontations in 2007. Kevin is an outstanding developer of leaders and understands the world and needs of educators.
— Vikki Reynolds, Idaho Association of School Administrators
I have been using Crucial Conversations skills for the past several years in my various leadership roles, including that of coordinating Special Ed programs in our district. I was so impressed with these skills that I became certified as a Crucial Conversations trainer and have brought these skills to many in our district and beyond. There is no doubt in my mind that the ability to provide supportive coaching, effective feedback and resolve problems are the key essential skills for outstanding administrators. There are many issues in Special Education that require very sensitive, supportive coaching and leadership support. Crucial Conversations provides those skills and should be a must for every administrator. The same goes with leadership. We recently brought the Extraordinary Leader program to a group of principals from Title I schools in the Nebo School District. What a powerful experience it was! The 360 degree feedback instrument allowed us to gather very concise feedback from faculty, staff, leaders and peers of each principal, and each of us used this feedback to create a personal action plan to help move us from “good to great” as leaders.. The tools are powerful, and Kevin is a master presenter who knows our business and how to apply the skills and concepts to the world of education. This program has launched a year long competency based leadership development program from the Extraordinary Educator Leadership Instutute content and gives us a way to periodically measure how we are doing. I heartily recommend it for any administrative team!
— J Lynn Jones, Special Education and Federal Programs Director, Nebo School District
We invited Kevin R. Miller to South Dakota, where he presented his leadership development program to four superintendents and 30 principals. The results were overwhelmingly positive. His energy and passion for leadership, coupled with his outstanding materials, not only taught us valuable tools and skills but re-instilled in us the passion for becoming more outstanding leaders in our schools. We have invited him to return in March 2003 to present the Extraordinary Leader program with its 360 degree leadership profiles. He will also be a keynote speaker at the South Dakota middle school educator conference. Don’t miss out on having Kevin inspire and teach your administrators.
— James Heinert, Superintendent, Meade School District
The Emery County School District had the delightful privilege of having Kevin Miller present at our Back to School Institute. His presentation of finding joy in life and reducing stress was well received by our teachers. Kevin also presented a session to our principals on Leadership and how we separate leadership from management. He presented with enthusiasm and earned the respect of our administrators with his knowledge and experience. Kevin presents with energy and excitement. He knows his stuff. We will continue to call upon Kevin in our efforts to change the way we look at leadership in light of the federal mandates of No Child Left Behind. I would highly recommend Kevin Miller to other school districts interested in motivating employees and developing strong leaders.
— Kirk L Sitterud, Superintendent, Emery County School District
Crucial Conversations has revolutionized our ability as a school district to get improved results. Here is one example from our organization: Prior to the training the School Board and teachers struggled through contract negotiations. Two years ago we painfully went through the entire process ending with a hearing with the Department of Labor and the School Board imposing their last best offer. As we prepared for 2004-2005 negotiations I had the School Board and Teacher Leaders review Module 5 on Mutual Purpose. We had all matters settled within three meetings and all parties were happy with the result. As we continue to tackle morale issues from the past we have the survey information to review. I think we will need to look at expanding the training for all teachers next fall and we continue to work on better communication within the district. As a school superintendent, I find myself in crucial conversations on a regular basis. After this workshop I now feel I have the skills to handle them more effectively. This workshop cuts right to the core of a set of skills that everyone needs to have successful relationships in both our personal and professional lives. The course materials are wonderful and will help to make the experience ongoing and sustaining in your life. We sponsored this seminar and invited the mayor and key business people in our community to attend. It was an outstanding, uniting experience and Kevin is a superb instructor! You are an active participant in role plays and see the skills in action through video clips. I strongly encourage this workshop because I feel the use of these skills can be very rewarding. I feel this experience will be extremely beneficial for all the entities that were able to participate and we will continue a dialogue to try to follow-up and keep the community moving forward.
— Tim Mitchell, Superintendent, Rapid City Area School District
Crucial Conversations has given us the knowledge and skills to effectively address high stakes and potentially volatile issues in a manner that promotes professionalism and produces results. Following our training session, the Administrative Team held a series of “Crucial Conversations” meetings to address some issues that had been challenging us for some time. Starting with heart, making is safe and developing mutual purpose were key principles that helped us take the dialogue to a new level of shared meaning and it ultimately produced the results that we were all looking for. We now recognize the power of “Crucial Conversations” and utilize our new knowledge and skills regularly as we carry out the mission of Meade School District 46-1. Early in the seminar, I came to realize that most of my conversations on the job are crucial. Having a model along with knowledge and skills will help me be a more effective communicator, to carry out crucial conversations and get desired results. Kevin does a tremendous job and tied the material closely to our needs in education. I want to bring this training to my entire staff, including all our faculty!
— Jim Heinert, Superintendent, Meade School District