Cover Story

The Tool

A cover story is a magazine article that is illustrated or advertised on the front cover.

What do you want on your font cover?

How to use

  • tell a story
  • communicate a message
  • clarify thinking
  • prioritization - going to the heart of an issue
  • have visual impact

As a leader cover story can have many uses, some of which could be:

  • Visualizing and communicating your strategic goals in a memorable way
  • Evaluation Action Plan - as a school, what do we want on the front cover of our school magazine / centre spread in 5 years time? What do we want to achieve by then? 
  • Leadership Team / Student Council - what do you want to be our proudest moment this year? What amazing goal / event can we work towards? 
  • Teacher Induction Week - There are many challenges faced by new teachers to our school. Which seems the most challenging to you? Which would you be most proud in overcoming? What is your 'mountain'? 


  • Watch this white board video in which a strategy consultant explains the importance of visualizing your strategic goals. She introduces the concept of designing a cover story to capture and communicate these goals.

  • As a team design your own cover story as an visual expression of what success will look like.

Here is an example of how Greenfield Community School in Dubai used this tool to visually communicate their strategic goals. Such a visual representation is easily articulated in posters around the school and postcards to all stakeholders.


Click here to access a link that explores ten book covers and explains why each communicates its message well. You could use this technique when trying to communicate your big message.

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