The best investment you will ever make is who you spend time with!

This statement is often attributed to Jim Rohn, an American motivational speaker and entrepreneur. The idea behind it is that the people you spend time with can have a significant impact on your life, and surrounding yourself with positive, successful individuals can help to inspire and motivate you to achieve your own goals. This can be particularly true for school principals, who have a great deal of influence over the students and teachers in their schools and can help to create a positive and productive learning environment.

Being intentional about these relationships is essential for creating a positive and productive learning environment for your students and staff. Here are a few key thoughts for building positive relationships and surrounding yourself with the right people.

  1. Seek out mentorship: Identifying individuals who have the experience and knowledge you want to acquire and seeking out their guidance and advice is an important step in building positive relationships. As a school principal, you can learn from other experienced school leaders, as well as other leaders in our industry. Having a mentor can provide you with valuable support and advice, and can also serve as a sounding board for your ideas and concerns.
  2. Build a network: Building a professional network is an essential part of being a school principal. By connecting with other professionals in education, both within and outside of your school, you can stay informed about the latest trends and developments in your field and have a valuable resource when you need support or advice. Networking also allows you to share best practices and collaborate with other professionals to improve the education for students.
  3. Surround yourself with positivity: Surrounding yourself with positive, supportive, and encouraging individuals is essential for maintaining a positive mindset and staying motivated. Avoid those who are negative, critical, or bring you down, as they can have a detrimental impact on your well-being and ability to lead effectively.
  4. Be selective: As a school principal, you have the power to choose the company you keep. Be selective about who you spend your time with, and make sure that the individuals you surround yourself with align with your values and goals.
  5. Lead by example: As a school principal, your actions and behaviours can have a ripple effect on the entire school community. By leading by example and consistently demonstrating positive and professional behaviours, you can help to create a culture of positivity and success.

Remember, building positive relationships takes time and effort, but it is worth it in the long run. It’s important to be intentional about the relationships you build and the people you surround yourself with.

Author: Dr Jake Madden

Jake Madden (Dip Teach; B.Ed; Grad Dip: Leadership; M. Ed: Leadership; EdD; FACEL; MACE) Dr. Jake Madden is currently the Principal, St Edward’s Primary School, Tamworth. He has enjoyed a successful teaching and principal leadership career over the last thirty years building teacher capacity through the development of learning in the contemporary world, the promotion of flexible learning spaces to meet the needs of the 21st century learner and curriculum for global mindedness. Jake is a leader in the notion of teacher-as-researcher and is widely published in this area, authoring and co-authoring books and a number of journal articles showcasing his experiences and research into leading educational change.

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