Teaching is clearly a footrace against the clock.
It seems the school year has just started and already we’ve reached the holidays.
The next two months will be a blur, but as a good leader, I know you use these two months to be thankful for your team and celebrate the “family feel” of your organization.
I also hope that you are thinking hard about the days after the holidays when your team members return from their extended vacations. Don’t underestimate the need for some extra love during the first weeks of 2020.
There is a transition that occurs in the new year and leaders need to see clearly and get in front of whatever mood the team is going to bring into the new year. It’s not just the kids. You know that school staffers can also come back with some post-holiday doldrums.
They might not “feel the love” for being back at work so I recommend an intentional approach to your January/February staff development.
Here’s how to focus on motivating all the members of your school community to recommit to believing in your work and in the team:
Share stories of perseverance.
People are inspired by the stories of others. There are many great examples in the educational world of people who have overcome extraordinary challenges to do the valuable work of educating our children. Share these stories with your team to help get them fired up about their jobs all over again.
Get your Parent Club involved.
Teach parents how to become participants in your school culture. There are some great ideas for parent workshops - find one that fits your culture. I offer an hour workshop called “The Winners Vocabulary” which gives parents specific strategies on how to talk to their kids about school. You have a chance as the leader to create a partnership with your parents and empower them to help you help their kids in the journey.
Put your student leaders to work.
They have the power to impact student culture and we need to show them how to make that happen. Help them learn about values and behaviors and watch them put a plan together to make your school great.
Leadership is about capitalizing on opportunities to help your team grow. While there are a lot of new programs out there but if your team isn’t ready to “feel the love,” you’ve wasted time and money. Invest in your team in a purposeful way. Start by motivating them in a systematic way.