Effective Education Leaders are Attentive
Life is filled with distractions; great education leaders know how to remain on course and block distractions out. Remaining attentive involves staying focused on the endgame, allocating your time strategically, and training your brain like a muscle to eliminate work that is non-essential.
Let’s look at a scenario
The key to being attentive is defining what your primary focus is at the moment. If you are working on a critical report that needs to be submitted by 5:00 pm, then strategically focus on completing that. Tune out all distractions and let the task in front of you become the most important thing in the world.
Before you lock in on the task at hand, make sure that you isolate potential distractions and neutralize them. For instance, you know that your wife calls you on your lunch break to catch up, so ask her to refrain from doing so for that particular day. Also, let your administrative assistant run interference by routing non-emergency requests to your assistant principals. This includes discipline issues, teacher questions, parental inquiries, etc. You know that these things are important, but for this one day, someone else can handle them.
Also, remember to turn your phone on silent and close out your email screen. And don’t even think of checking your social media. You want to remain focused, and you don’t want anything to distract you from the task at hand. Anyone urgently trying to reach you would know to call your office phone if they can’t reach your cell.
Speaking of your office phone, make you this line is rerouted to your administrative assistant. Imagine yourself as the quarterback, and your office staff as an offensive lineman, who will help you complete a pass for the game-winning touchdown by blocking all distractions. It might sound like a lot, but this is what it takes to sometimes remain attentive on projects that have an imminent deadline.