Four years ago, when I became the principal at J.W. Reason Elementary School, I had no idea what I was in for. I remember my first meeting with staff like it was yesterday. I let them ask me any questions they wanted. One brave soul said, “Are you nervous?” My reply was complete honesty. I said, “I’m sh*%ing bricks.” That’s right, that was my honest answer to my staff. And, I’ve been completely honest with them ever since.
Great relationships=Great Team=Magic
Honesty and transparency are the building blocks for great relationships. Great relationships are the building blocks of great teams. And, great teams…well, that’s what makes magic happen. If there is one thing that I’ve always believed about education, it’s that a great school day is magical. But, the magic doesn’t happen by accident.
Magic is made when the staff at a school works so closely together that they’re all headed in the same direction, focused on the same goals, and helping one another to become better every day. Urban Meyer calls this “alignment”. In his book Above the Line, Meyer says, “an aligned organization gets things done faster and with better results, and it’s more agile and responsive…” (pg 158).
Time and time again, over the past few weeks I’ve noticed the benefits of alignment among my staff. We have accomplished so much together. When we have a problem, a fail to fill sub, a student in crisis, a family needing help, a new student to the building, a staff member in need, a new idea to try, a failure, or a goal to accomplish, we all work together.
We don’t blame.
We don’t complain.
We don’t defend.
We...as we say...GSD!
Are we perfect? No.
Are we as aligned as we’ve every been? Yes.
Can we get better? Absolutely.
Why? Because we’re a team and we’re going far, together.