Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Effectiveness on the Job - How we really differ from each other

Regular readers know I greatly enjoy helping people to learn and to reach their potential. As we all know, though, not everyone chooses to grow. It takes work and many people find other things to pour their energy into.

I'm sure all of us, no matter where we work and what we do, know colleagues who are effective and some who are...less effective. I had some thoughts about recently while planning professional development activities. 

First off, I had to admit I don't see teachers who knowingly cut corners and try to game the system. In other words, the differences in results are not due so much to intentional laziness. There are probably people out there like this, but no one I know would put up with the stress of teaching and consciously try to be ineffective.

Yet we obviously differ in effectiveness. So I tried to zoom in and list some specific, underlying ways in which we do differ. These differences in turn lead to poor decisions and less than effective practices.

I hope this list can be useful for self-reflection exercises and some important discussions with leaders and staff. 

We differ in:
  • What we are passionate about
  • Teaching skills
  • Learning skills
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Ability to self-assess
  • Problem solving skills
  • Confidence in our current abilities
  • Satisfaction with our current abilities.
  • What we know is possible
  • What we believe is possible
  • What we hope is possible
  • How much we fear failure
  • How much we care
  • Commitment to a shared purpose
  • What we want out of work...and out of life
  • Our ideas of what makes a good teacher
  • How much we think we should do
  • How much we think people can change
  • What we take comfort in 
  • How willing we are to be uncomfortable
What would you add to the list?

How can a list like this lead to meaningful conversation?

photo credit: 07162013- AD in Minneapolis, Minnesota Events via photopin (license)

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