There are a number of other electric and hybrid cars on the market and coming soon, and some with arguably better range and price point. The analogy to Apple computers should be lost on no one. What Elon Musk did with this roll out has Steve Jobs smiling from beyond the grave. Simply, Musk and Tesla have created a buzz, using a new look and a new design, and more than anything they are selling a vision of the future backed by multi-billion dollar gambles on an enormous battery factory in Nevada and re-usable space vehicles. We WANT Musk to win; we WANT to be part of the team that bets the farm on renewable energy and resources that have a chance to save the planet. Given a choice, we WANT to own a Tesla more than a Chevrolet.
The lesson for school leaders could not be more clear. If you are 100% confident that your school is going to be packed with students 10-20 years in the future, don’t worry about it (but I suggest you should be relieved of your duties). If not, spend a lot of community time figuring out why families in the future should want to be on your team so much more than any other team that they would plunk down a deposit for a vision of the future. That is what I am prodding school leaders to do. Succeed at that and you have set your school on a success trajectory for decades to come.