Tag Archives: resolutions

Responding and Reacting

1 Jun

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I have used a saying this week and it is “less hui and more doeee.” It is linked to leadership. Most people know about these principles of leadership and agree on their value. Yet putting them into practice is a different story. They require courage. Paying attention to our relationships.

The universe is a matrix of relationships, and nothing is done without them. In crisis, we need relationships. We can learn a lot from paying extra attention to how we relate to others and how they relate to us. We could also talk to someone we trust and learn from them how they experience us at our best, and what is different when we show up under pressure. It is an invitation to just take it all in and not judge it as good or bad. It may give us valuable information and an incentive to experiment with some new approaches.

Another component worth paying attention to is our organization’s mission and the greater good. What is our primary motivator?  In my role, it is people. The students. The parents. The staff.

Achieving our and our team’s annual goals or helping our school thrive now AND in the future? I have seen so many leaders (including myself) focus on over-achieving in the day to day at the expense of doing the work that matters to lay the foundations for the future.

Our personal short-term success does not guarantee we will be doing great in five years from now. What do we need to pay attention to in order to optimize for the future? My guess is not necessarily the problem we think we should solve right now. It may be helpful to reflect on how much the current issue will matter next week, at the end of the quarter, next year, and in five years. Paying attention to a longer time horizon can enable a healthy shift in perspective.

We are often so caught up in fixing or solving the problem that we forget to take a closer look at the patterns in the system that are bringing short term crises forward. What wants to happen? Why is it difficult and why is the same problem repeating itself, even though our smartest people have been working on it for a while now? What if we looked at the system with fresh eyes and asked different questions? What are some factors we have not considered before? What other forces are at play?

Next time you find yourself in crisis, and you are tempted to jump to action immediately, reflect and respond do not react. See if you can resist the urge of instant problem solving. Let go of focusing exclusively on fixing the issue. Think about working with. Observe what wants to happen in your environment and what you can learn from it.

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Solutions Orientated

5 Sep

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I like to think I am solutions orientated so on the back of my last piece here are some ideas around how we can be better at catching students up.

Make Catch-Ups Purposeful

Ensuring catch up sessions aren’t just an opportunity to recover what was taught in lessons. Because this may convey the message that if they don’t listen first time in class, they can listen to it again in our time after school.

Enrich

Instead of catch up classes, can sessions after school actually go beyond the curriculum?   Can we link with specialist providers in our field to show how our subjects are used in industry?  Can we bring in experts to share their knowledge and push learning beyond its existing level?

Set Boundaries

There are students who genuinely need this additional support and I don’t know any teachers who would want to not provide this.  But do we ensure that those who need it get it rather than those who can’t be bothered getting a second chance

Phase them out

Could the way we design lessons, curriculums and schemes be reviewed?  Could we analyse our teaching and learning?  Asking the question why additional sessions are actually needed could lead to some real improvements to the department.  Why do we not have the time to deliver the course in lessons?  Why isn’t the content sticking? How could we use technology to complement this?

In conclusion though and why would you remove them if hardworking students are seeking to improve their grades further?  But then again, would removing them and addressing why we might need them solve the problem itself?

In 2016 I will….

1 Jan

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In 2016 there are a number of challenges ahead of us all. At present  I am reading and rethinking my approach to things in in 2016. I know I am very goals driven. I love setting goals. My wife not so much.

For many, New Year’s resolutions often feel like a forced, trite way to make a change. After all, if you really wanted to change, why would you wait around for January First? You’d be better off just making sporadic changes throughout the year, right?

Well, that strategy doesn’t always pan out like we’d like it to. Waiting until you “feel ready” to change often enables you to push aside goals that are important, but not time-sensitive.

If you’re serious about making a change, it’s important that you put specific, time-bound goals in place in order to achieve success. And the great thing about resolutions is they don’t have to just live in your personal life; they can be a powerful aid to help you grow in a number of areas, too. As the year progresses I will let you know on progress.

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