Sunday, 22 February 2009

We are facing another period of real change, real challenge and real opportunity. We must remain focused on the things that matter and not be distracted by the noise, the clutter and the distractions...

Half-term has not been uneventful as we wrestled with the Machinery of Government, the National Challenge and new Academies. Whatever we do, we must never forget that our priority is to continue our relentless and uncompromising focus on standards, outcomes, attendance and behaviour. We must ensure that young people currently in Years 9, 10 and 11 are targeted with every possible strategy to ensure that they achieve good GCSE results including English and mathematics.

Trust, respect, honesty and openness must shape the way we deal with everything we are doing to drive excellence. As we wrestle with these important issues we must remember that communication is going to be a key element of our work. How we communicate with our colleagues, with our schools and with our partners is vitally important. They say that strong, dynamic and proactive communication lies at the heart of an effective organisation. I am told that only 7% of the messages we receive are the things we say, the other 93% is wrapped up in our body language, our tone of voice and our expressions. In a people organisation like ours we need to understand and practice the 93% rule.

Here are a few practical tips we must all consider:
¨ Smile;
¨ Listen and pay attention;
¨ Don’t interrupt or dismiss concerns;
¨ Use names;
¨ Focus and concentrate;
¨ Encourage;
¨ Give genuine praise;
¨ Take a personal interest;
¨ Spend time;
¨ Learn.

Remember, simply be your brilliant best.

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