MVP: Not everything needs your best effort.
I needed a second cup of coffee to write this morning’s email.
Sometimes it is a struggle.
There are times when I need to grind out a piece of writing, and there are other times where I need to wait until my mind is in a better place.
For the daily email, I need to remind myself that it really doesn’t matter.
I’ve written five emails a week since April, 2020. That’s about 900 daily messages.
Some of them are great, some are duds, and the truth is I never know for sure which messages will resonate and which won’t.
And if this one isn’t great, that’s okay. I’ll have 900 more chances, I’m sure.
Know the difference between things for which you need to bring your A-game and those which simply need a ‘C’ to get done. It will improve your sanity.
Lucky for me, the coffee tastes good this morning.
Today’s intention: Look at your tasks, and ask “A or C?”
MVP: We make processes more complicated than they need to be.
I recently received a letter from a bank notifying me that my SC Tax refund debit card from 2023 would be expiring on February 1, 2024.
I vaguely remembered using the card and not being able to figure out how much money was on it, so I dug it out of my pile of debit/gift/refund cards.
The card expired in October.
I took the card to my bank, but since my bank did not issue the card, they couldn’t tell me how much money was on it.
I called the hotline number on the back of the card.
After several minutes straining to communicate on a bad connection, the bank told me they could not issue a new card. They were no longer handling the funds for South Carolina and the only thing they could do was write me a check. Please!
I was transferred to someone else to verify something (I don’t know what), and then sent back to the original person.
This took about 15 minutes of my time and the service provider’s time.
Now my $36 check is in the email! Or it will be in 10-14 business days.
Imagine an alternate universe where South Carolina had directly deposited my tax refund to my bank account.
What’s the point of all this?
I am willing to bet most of us work in organizations that have some convoluted processes that are counterproductive.
Today’s intention: Be mindful of the processes you work with. Does it all make sense?
MVP: When stuff gets messed up, we need to pause our projects
This past week I’ve been finishing up some trim work in our house.
When the rain came, I was able to keep working and finish the project!
Last week we looked at turbulence, and how to lead in an organization that is being hammered by storms.
One thing to remember is that making change is hard and dangerous when the canopy has been blown off. Sometimes we need to pause the initiatives and get things covered.
MVP: Common frameworks and language help bring alignment
If you said to me “I need to get out of quadrant 3!” I would know exactly what you meant.
However, people in your workplace who aren’t familiar with the Eisenhower Matrix might stare at you blankly.
When people in an organization share common frameworks and language, it becomes much easier to discuss and make progress on challenges.
In schools, we talk about classroom management and discipline, but these terms mean different things to different people, resulting in confusion and frustration in challenging situations.
What if we had common frameworks and language to talk about building a positive classroom culture?
If you are an educational leader, I invite you to take my free course on the foundations of building a classroom culture. Link and details are below the signature line. You can also learn more on today’s episode of The Assistant Principal Podcast.
If you aren’t an educator, think about some of the challenges you face, how people talk about those challenges, and the perspectives and assumptions they bring. Are you all speaking the same language?
Today’s intention: Listen for the meanings behind what people say and think about one area for which common language could be helpful.
MVP: Take a breath and pause.
After last week’s treatise, let’s keep today’s thoughts short.
The list of things I need to do on the professional and personal front right now is overwhelming. Just like you. Just think for a moment of some of the big ones – really, pause for 10 seconds and think about it.
Now, take a deep breath in, breathe out, and pause. Imagine being present:
Today’s intention: Today, just try to be that present one time, with one person. The world is not still, but you can create stillness around you.