I'm beginning a new series here, something to help student and campus leaders think more intentionally and proactively about the leadership opportunity set before them. The lessons apply to any leadership setting, no matter your age. As always, I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.
Something is not important because it's a tradition; something is a tradition because it's important.
We've got to get out of the rut we find ourselves in, thinking that every tradition is important. One of the most valuable things you may do as a leader is to pause and ask, "Why are we doing this?"
If the answers you get back are, "We've always done it" or "The guys before us did it" or "That's the way we learned it" then that tradition needs to be examined and possibly stopped.
Make it a point to question tradition. If the answer comes back, "Because it's important and here's why..." and the answer is justified, then carry on.
Better yet, begin new traditions. Ones of excellence. Ones of dignity and not shame; ones of hope and help. Do things that are important and I'll bet that they become traditions.