Happy beautiful Michigan Monday Moanin to all of you. It is hard to believe that today is the final Monday of April 2017. For school districts in Michigan, April signals the beginning of the stretch drive to the end of the 2016-17 school year. For the past several years the focus of many April MMT’s were about the critical focus of finishing strong. Today’s blog is about a key ingredient of doing just that, the importance of being a good listener. During the final weeks of school there are many demands on all staff and students. From testing, final evaluation meetings, assessments, classroom interruptions, to end of the year celebrations , demands can turn into distractions. For all of us in education, these distractions can be unsettling and may cause a lack of patience and understanding as we deal with them and one another.Being a good listener is critical during these times. Listening is a leadership skill that is essential and yet often overlooked. Most people assume that they are very good at listening. However, have you noticed the amount of times that someone is on their phone, device, or noticing someone walk by as you are talking with them? Everyone of us is busy during this time of year however, it is important to not be distracted and focus on every interaction and conversation. Set a respectful tone in your classroom, building, and district. Listen!
Here are a few of my favorite quotes that hopefully guide your work this week.
- “One of the most sincere forms of respect is actually listening to what another has to say.” –Bryant H. McGill
- “Listening is such a simple act. It requires us to be present, and that takes practice, but we don’t have to do anything else. We don’t have to advise, or coach, or sound wise. We just have to be willing to sit there and listen.” Margaret J. Wheatley
- “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” Stephen R. Covey
Have a great week and keep finding the good stuff.