I had just left the hospital after my second EKG in two years as a middle school director. It wasn't a heart attack according to the doctor, just a bad combination of high stress, no sleep and dehydration.
I reached out to my mentor, who too was a former principal, to let him know I was ok and just needed to take a few days off.
I’ll never forget his response.
“Tom, what is it do you do all day?”
I had great answers, “Well I answer emails to teachers and parents, I do walk throughs, I handle discipline, I put out fires. You know, my job!”
Please Note: The worse excuse is a good excuse.
He replied, “And which of those activities actually improving your school?”
“Well none,” I said. “But you don’t understand, I have to do them! Otherwise…”
He answered, “The only thing you have to do as the leader of this organization is master three things.”
Do It! ...
During a recent leadership training, I facilitated a seminar with twenty organizational leaders. I asked them the following question:
“When I think about delegating, I worry about ______________?”
They were asked to fill-in-the-blank on a sticky note and place it in the middle of the room.
We then took a tour around the room and discussed the responses. Overall, the leaders’ concerns fell into 3 key categories:
I believe that being “busy” is the slow death of the school leader.
Being “busy” cannibalizes the things that you should be doing.
Being “busy” causes us to focus on the wrong things.
Being “busy” minimizes productivity.
Being “busy” can actually cost you time, money and progress towards your goals.
As a principal, and now business owner, I am extremely active when it comes to work.
I look busy. I act busy. People definitely think I am busy because that’s typically how they acknowledge me when they call or see me, “I know you’re busy so thanks for taking my call.”
But what has been brought to my awareness recently is that being busy creates empathy.
Other people empathize with being busy, because we have all been there.
When you communicate busy - people affirm your busyness. Most of the time when you ask someone “how are you?”
Success is defined as the accomplishment of an aim or purpose. Now, what success looks like to you, I cannot answer that. Only you should define what success looks and feels like. If you don't have this vision in mind, stop reading and take at least five minutes to think about it. Write down whatever you see mentally and put it somewhere in your daily view. Then come back to this blog and read four tips I have learned as a coach, mentor and consultant to hundreds of leaders across the globe.
Tip #1: Act on the Right Choices: Dr. Jim Rohn taught us that we are the average of the five people we spend the most time with but my mentor made me realize recently that our success is the sum of the daily choices we take action on. Think about it. Every day as a principal, CEO, business owner, or parent, you make hundreds of decisions based on thousands of choices. You act on those decisions which lead to other choices, decisions and actions. Choosing not to act is still action. Every...
If you are like me you like lists. You cannot start your day without writing down some sort of plan, some list of items that you aim to accomplish that day. Now, if you are even more like me that list is probably filled with items that are either not the most important tasks you should be focused on that day. Working with school leaders across the country I have learned there is one major difference between the good and the great. The great are relentless when it comes to how they can best utilize their time and develop their team.
Watch the video or read below to learn three three items that should be on your “to do” list every single day as a leader that you are probably overlooking!
Develop your top people: Leadership author Liz Wiseman stated, “Leaders who are multipliers increase intelligence in people and in organizations. The people on the team actually get smarter and more capable thanks to the people around them.” As a leader you need to spend...
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