Leadership Conversations: The Power of Reflection
Looking back on what might have been the most challenging year for educators in a generation, it is easy to see all the bumps and bruises and challenges. We’ve been challenged to develop new health and safety protocols, have been called on to shift communication style, and the entire orientation and approach of how we “do school” has been upended. Just 13 months ago, could any of us have imagined millions of kids pivoting to online learning? And yet, here we are.
As more and more of us get vaccinated, and our doors open to kids, and a return to normalcy – or a “new normal” – is in sight, this is a good time for us to begin a daily reflection habit designed to improve our work and the work of our teams. Harry Kraemer, a clinical professor at the Kellogg School and former CEO of a company with 52,000 employees, suggests three benefits of daily reflection.
For starters, reflection helps you identify and keeps you in touch with your priorities. This allows us to focus on what is important, identify what’s working, and determine what might need to be done differently.
Second, reflection and forward thinking planning helps minimize surprise. As the Roman philosopher Seneca once said, “Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”
Finally, self-reflection helps to build stronger teams. The more you know yourself, the better you are prepared to lead, and, you are in the position to support others with their own self-reflection habits.