Advanced Time Management Techniques with Eric Makelky Transformative Principal 501


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This week is our first “coaching” call with Principal Eric Makelky. We jump on a zoom call, and hit record. You get to hear it.

In this episode, Eric shares how, a month into school, he’s getting pulled in all directions and can’t get focused on doing what needs to be done! Have you ever felt that way? I know I have!

He’s showing up late to meetings, getting too many todos, and just feels like he’s constantly drinking from a firehose!

We talk about three distinct strategies in this episode:

Strategy 1: add 15–30 minutes to however long you think each meeting will be.

Instead of scheduling an hour meeting, give yourself extra time. This intentionally reduces the amount of meetings you can have, prevents you from getting overbooked, and makes things better.

Strategy 2: You seem upset, what’s the best way to contact you when he gets back at X?

When people are upset, their needs can seem more urgent, so make sure they are heard, and that often softens the anxious feelings.

Strategy 3: intentional Drive-bys - Schedule time to go be visible.

Schedule time to go get the things people want to drop on you. They’re going to drop them on you anyway, might as well make it happen on your timetable as much as possible.

What do you think of these three strategies? Any good? Did we miss something? We want your feedback!

Also, Eric is looking for guests to interview on these three topics: - Retaining great teachers - Adapting to the culture of a new school

More Show Notes
  • Ideal Week -
  • Being new, running into being a fire extinguisher instead of a leader.
  • Start with Office team - 2 principals, 2 secretaries
  • Shared calendars
  • Managing your own time?
  • Informal meetings - often showing up late.
  • Why are you showing up late?
  • Drive bys are causing me to be late
  • Start and end on time is a norm.
  • Strategy: add 15–30 minutes to however long you think each meeting will be.
  • Fridays:
    • Red - no staff no students
    • Blue - staff 8–12, kids maybe or required 9–11
    • Black - 8–4 full day staff inservice
  • Lots of questions from lots of PLCs
  • Being pulled in a lot of directions for each Friday
  • New expectation - This is what you tell someone if they stop by…
  • Previous expectation - Someone asks for the principal, we get the principal.
  • Give a respectful answer
  • Why wouldn’t your staff do it as you are asking? Angry, appease because they are angry. People get defensive when others are upset.
  • Strategy: You seem upset, what’s the best way to contact you when he gets back at X?
  • Proactive things to do to prevent things from popping up
    • Quiet time outside of school hours to get other things done.
    • Regular emails - Friday memo to make sure people know
    • All the reasons why staff come down to office “Master doc”
    • Schedule time to pick up drive bys.
  • Strategy: intentional Drive-bys - Schedule time to go be visible.
  • We haven’t talked about me - why not?
  • What was most valuable? Morning drive by lap.

How long will this last?

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