The LEAD workshop will introduce community leaders to critical concepts needed to begin this journey and also provide tools that enable leaders to see and understand new standards that are being attained through Smart Community efforts. LEAD

serves as the community compass, a compass that provides a guide to community leaders on four distinctive directions much like north, south, east and west; to learn how to acquire new knowledge; engage all citizens on needs and expectations; adapt to new thinking, new ideas, new technologies; and develop new standards that increase the quality of life within our community.


Learning is acquiring new knowledge, behaviors, skills, values, preferences or understanding, and may involve synthesizing different types of information.

Smart Thoughts: “We now accept the fact that learning is a lifelong process of keeping abreast of change. And the most pressing task is to teach people how to learn.” -Peter Drucker

“The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.” -Alvin Toffler

"In a time of drastic change, it is the learners who inherit the future. The learned find themselves equipped to live in a world that no longer exists.” -Warren G. Bennis

Smart Objective: It is imperative that within our community leadership we create a greater understanding of how technology is transforming our communities and the lives of our citizens. The objective of this workshop session will be to introduce learning concepts and tools that will enable community leaders to think beyond the current circumstances and standards.

Smart Tools: Within the SCS framework are multiple tools and methods by which to help community leaders to learn new practices, standards, and models that enhance the learning experience:

  • Smart Community Source Gateway – the gateway serves as a repository of information and resources for all community leaders to leverage in the learning process.
  • Joint book studies with all Smart Community Leaders throughout the state and region
  • References and research documents within the Smart Community Gateway 
  • Monthly Smart Community news, information and trends 
  • NESI-SES Association Technology Forum – an annual forum where researchers and scientist share information about new technologies that are impacting our organizations, communities and lives
  • Smart Community Laboratories – currently SCS has identified a number of laboratories that will enable community leaders to be exposed to technologies that are transforming our communities. Learn more about these at Innovation Pointe and the EROC.


absorb: to draw into; involve: to involve oneself or become occupied; participate.

Smart Thought: “Tell me; I'll forget. Show me; I may remember. But involve me and I'll understand.” -Chinese Proverb

Smart Objective: Engaging citizens and community leaders will be highly important if we are to make substantial changes within our communities, changes that raise the standard for all citizens and increase our opportunities for success. The engagement objectives are to increase collaboration from all segments within the community through focused methods, programs and priorities.

Smart Tools: In todays world of social media, individuals are connected at all times, creating opportunities for collaboration and engagement like never before in our history. SCS has captured many of these tools and methods to enable engagement among community citizens and leaders:

  • Social Media Sites: SCS provides accounts to all the major social media applications; Facebook, twitter, YouTube channel, Instagram, etc.
  • Smart Community Source Gateway – multiple applications within the gateway application enhance the ability for leaders to engage; contact manager, event calendar, list serve, etc.
  • Civic Presentations – presentations have been developed that allow community leaders to engage citizens through the multiple civic organizations.
  • Smart Community Source Assessment/Surveys – Surveys are an important part of engagement to ensure that feedback is being received from all community constituents.
  • LINK – the LINK program has been developed as a complete different leadership workshop to focus on the need for community engagement and ensure that communities are connecting/linking people and strategy to real solutions.


Adapting - to adjust (something or oneself) to different conditions; to change something to suit a new purpose

Smart Thoughts: “The worst part of success is, to me, adapting to it. It's scary.” -Kendrick Lamar

"The world we have created is a product of our thinking; it cannot be changed without changing our thinking.” -Albert Einstein

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new lands, but in seeing with new eyes.” -Marcel Proust

Smart Objectives: Adapting to change is one of the most challenging things for us as individuals, and it creates significant challenges for communities as individuals and community leaders find themselves caught in a “status quo hunker down” mentality. This mindset leaves the community at the disposal of the circumstances rather than confronting circumstances with proactive vision and solution that positions the community for success. The adapting objective is to enable citizens to better understand how we must make conscious decisions that lead to positive change and how business logic will be required.

  • Smart Tools: Many communities can point to instances in which they have adapted to change and circumstances leading to current successes and quality of life. SCS believes that our compass is at times based on the pull of the past rather than a vision of the future built on new opportunities that are presented through technology advancements. We can look to the past and see that innovations and technology have always driven new opportunities, but how do we create a new generation of leaders that can adapt and adopt new innovative approaches that lead to community opportunities?
  • Past Failure References – Stories of past failures can be our best lessons on how not to succeed. SCS provides a reference database of businesses that failed to see the future and therefore became irrelevant. Leaders whose vision is limited by their past experiences become rapidly irrelevant in a rapidly changing world. Consider Eastman Kodak. Kodak created the first digital camera, an 8 pound, 0.01 megapixel still camera, in 1975. Despite Kodak’s technical innovations – which were numerous – Kodak failed to adapt to the new digital world. In February 2012, Kodak announced that it would cease making digital cameras. Kodak took too long to adapt to the changing world.
  • Community Evaluation on Adapting to new Technologies – An evaluation of current technologies and a gap analysis on where the community exists in leveraging these innovations to position for the future. This concept is built on the SAR method –
    situation, approach and result.
  • Decision Making Tools – SCS has created a number of tools that enable leaders to better assess a situation and understand hurdles and how to overcome these hurdles so that the community can adapt and adopt new practices, methods and integrate new innovative solutions.


Development - the process of growing or developing; act of improving by expanding or enlarging or refining; a process in which something passes by degrees to a different stage

Smart Thought: “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.” -Albert Einstein

Smart Objectives: The development of individuals and the organizations will be imperative for a community to meet the multiple dynamic challenges. The objective of the development workshop will be to provide tangible approaches in developing new thinking that leads to new opportunities and solutions.

Smart Tools: The primary tool within the development stage of LEAD is the review of eight foundational principles for developing a smart community:

  1. Self awareness – becoming aware of our strengths and also our weaknesses. Principle teaching is the understanding of how important we need each other as a community. Leveraging experiences, talent, skills, knowledge, resources, etc.
  2. Sensitivity – being sensitive to the history, people and critical issues within the community. Principle teaching to understand before trying to be understood.
  3. Patience and self-control – creating a safe environment for dialogue and sharing of ideas. Principle teaching how to have crucial conversations.
  4. Passion – developing a vision and purpose within the community is vital for mobilizing people who are passionate about the community and the role they can play in making a difference.
  5. Compassion – developing a smart community is understanding that no one can be left behind and that the more engagement and collaboration the more buy-in from all community segments.
  6. Transparency/Straightforwardness – developing relationships and ecosystems that are free from self interest and are built on win-win models.
  7. Consensus Building – creating leaders who strive to build unity rather than division.
  8. Dealing with disruption/challenges – developing leaders who understand that many valleys will come and it will require forerunners who can navigate these challenges and push through to new standards and opportunities.