Yep, there’s been a fair bit of change since January. Not that I’m surprised. One significant change has affected me professionally and personally.
Our previous Director of Education, Dr. John Malloy, took on a new position in Toronto at the beginning of January. We had a six month interim period to June before our new Director, Manny Figueiredo, was appointed by the Board of Trustees. This time on the senior management team was, well, interesting. It exposed strengths and weaknesses in our structures and provided new learning for me as I observed both myself and others deal with uncertainty and ambiguity. It was uncomfortable at times. (I wrote a post about this while in the midst of it, partly as a result of my observations.) It was not a time to take risks.
It was a time to peel away the extraneous activities and content and figure out what is truly important for me.
I already know that learning is paramount. That’s a non negotiable. But I have a few things that hold me back from influence and accomplishment. One is that I can get caught up in the rules. I was raised to be a black and white thinker with a strong sense of right and wrong. It’s taken me a long time to realize in my soul that life is really not black and white, no matter how much I want it to be. Rules and standards are important, but love and caring for people is more important. There’s always a way to acknowledge and respect others’ feelings and experiences and let people know they matter.
I’ve been tweeting, blogging and talking for a while now about building relationships, how to use words, and how to be a better listener. I want to be a leader who focuses on the person in front of me. I want to support and build people up. I’m very far from perfect, and I wear my emotions on my face, which can sometimes get in the way. I hope that I can finally start to break through and actually be able to do this a little better. Even if I add one feather to the scale (Kate Atkinson, 2015), that could make a difference to our learning together.
Thanks to Donna Fry for her nudge to update where I stand with my #oneword for 2015. Donna’s posts often inspire me to think more deeply – and all with an Ontario perspective. I appreciate having her as part of my PLN.