Prioritizing one-on-one

Photo by Amazon

I am currently reading A Chance to Make History: What Works and What Doesn’t in Providing an Excellent Education for All by Wendy Koop. In it, I found this paragraph:

Joe emphasizes that the critical purposes served by these management structures go well beyond improving teachers’ effectiveness. “It doesn’t sound that revolutionary to have one-on-ones with every teacher every week, but it’s absolutely critical. This is the venue for people’s voices to be heard, for problem solving, for being sure that everyone is getting what they need to do their job.” The fact that these school leaders are thinking so deliberately about management at all distinguishes them from many conventional incarnations of the principal role. In many schools one principal is technically the manager of fifty or even one hundred teachers, and there may be little, if any, interaction–not to mention effective management–happening in that relationship. “When I was teaching, I met with my principal only once. I never met with any sort of coach,” Joe recalls. “That system just cannot get us where we need to be. I do understand why that happens. There are always twenty things tugging at a school leader. The day can become very reactive, but if you want to create an exceptional school, you have to set aside time in the calendar to hear from, coach, and manage your team members.”

I am not sure I need to add a lot.  Structured process, culture and personal humane relationships go hand in hand together with the emergence of excellence. It could be a school, a for-profit company or any other organization. Creating the right norms and maintaining them by prioritizing treating the people your work with like unique individuals is a sure proof way to succeed in the long run.



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