Think about the most inspiring person you know. What makes that person inspiring to you? Is this person inspiring to others? Is it the way the person talks or acts?
So many things can go wrong during a day, week, season. Sometimes it feels as though your after school program isn’t going to make it, but it can with a little inspiration. Inspiration reminds us all that we are wonderful people and that there is more than one solution to a problem. It comes in many ways, but most teams look to their leader for that inspiration. So, how can you inspire your team?
Know Your Audience. The best way to inspire your team is to understand what makes them tick. By knowing the passion that drives them, you can find ways to inspire them.
Make Communication a Priority. Oftentimes problems arise when there is a miscommunication. If a team member or parent comes to you with a problem, listen closely and repeat the problem to them to ensure you understand it.
Invite Ideas and Suggestions. When problems arise or if team members just seem bored with the curriculum, invite ideas. Encourage your team to come up with ways to improve the program. If it is something the district cannot change, make sure to explain why so that your team understands.
Learn from Your Team. Each person on your team has a special talent or knowledge about a specific topic. Ask your team to share with you what they know. Sit in on their classes to see how they interact with and inspire children. You may learn something new from watching your staff in action.
Show Your Appreciation. “Thank you” goes a long way. Think of the times where you felt like no one appreciated how hard you worked. Sometimes the little things go unnoticed. Make an effort to say “Thank you” every day.
Inspiration isn’t a one-way street. As you learn about your team, improve your own communication, and invite team members to be part of the planning process, you will be inspired by their talents and knowledge. Creating a community where you are all appreciated for your talents will help you maintain and grow the quality team you have. As your passion grows, you inspire those around you. Education is inspiration.