Skills for Life

This morning I will be taking part in our annual ‘Inspirational Men’s’ event for Year 9 boys. Following on from our very successful women’s event earlier this month, the morning will involve year 9 boys meeting around 50 men from a range of careers sectors.  The boys will be asking questions about the routes people have taken to their current job, the best and worst parts of their role and any advice the men would provide the students.  This week’s blog gives me an opportunity to reflect on the advice I will provide our students:

 1)    Work hard and rewards will follow:  Whilst no-one should be taken for granted, I find it frustrating when people feel entitled to something without having put the effort in first. I know that at every stage of my career I have voluntarily supported a range of tasks beyond my job description to prepare me for that next stage or promotion.  Gaining experience and learning from those already in the job roles you want in the future will lead to longer term rewards.

 2)    Be a team player:  As technology advances around us, it is our human ability to interact with others, build relationships and demonstrate emotional intelligence that is key.  Building successful teams and being able to be part of a team has been a key element of my career to date.  I am extremely fortunate to have been surrounded by excellent colleagues that I have enjoyed working with and learnt lots from during every stage of my career.  Learning how to work with, and manage, a range of different people and personalities is an important skill our students must develop.

 3)    Communication is key:  Saying the right words, in the right way at the right time is vital to success.  Being able to communicate well through the written word and even more importantly in person in a range of situations is extremely important. Students should never underestimate the importance of positive body language, a good hand shake, eye contact, looking smart and speaking clearly.

 4)    Give things a go:  I believe that your career is much more rewarding if you are prepared to take risks and push yourself outside of your comfort zone. A year ago I was fortunate enough to work closely with primary colleagues when Roebuck Academy joined our trust. I have learnt so much from their expertise and this has enhanced my approach to leading our Trust. I believe that life outside of work will also be more rewarding for people who are prepared to try new things with a positive attitude and an open mind.

 5)    Do something you enjoy:  We have to spend the majority of our week at work and it is so important to find a role you enjoy and find rewarding.  Personally, I love my job. Yes, it has challenges and some days are difficult, but I work with fantastic people and love watching our students learn and develop the skills that will enable them to lead happy and successful lives.