Prioritizing Your Own Leadership Development with Maria Werner

Dealing with discipline, being the test coordinator, and taking care of a million things for everyone else. Somehow you find the time. But do you find – or make – that time for yourself? What are your strategies for nurturing your own growth? Today, Maria Werner talks with us about how she juggles school, kids, and even dogs, and manages to still prioritize her own growth. We also discuss how Maria has grown her leadership through APEx and some of her key takeaways.

Show Notes, Episode 31: Prioritizing Your Own Leadership Development with Maria Werner
 
About this show:
Dealing with discipline, being the test coordinator, and taking care of a million things for everyone else. Somehow you find the time. But do you find – or make – that time for yourself? What are your strategies for nurturing your own growth? Today, Maria Werner talks with us about how she juggles school, kids, and even dogs, and manages to still prioritize her own growth. We also discuss how Maria has grown her leadership through APEx and some of her key takeaways. 
 
Notable Quotes
Maria Werner:
“I think that the beauty of education is that there is always opportunity to grow”
 
“Stay in the now. I think that’s been a big piece of the puzzle”
 
“My drive time is my reflection time… If I didn’t have it, I would feel like there was something missing… A lot of my management comes just that thought process”
 
“First year is not meant to make waves, just ripples”
 
“I have found that the way to gain buy in is, instead of delivering the message, it is engulfing them in it, making it interactive, so that they can see, first-hand, that it works”
 
“Collaboration and mentorship are two of my biggest things that I rank the highest in my professional values and APEx covers both of those”
 
“I don’t have an opportunity to collaborate or talk with other people that are serving in the same role that I am, so that collaborative piece is a big part of my love for APEx”
 
“The one-on-one coaching that you have been able to provide me, I can’t put a dollar amount on that. You take me for who I am, and you know what I bring to the table, highlighting strengths and then pointing out where I could focus my improvement”
 
“The figures and visual representations that you provide are directly what works for me. They are small, incremental things that I can see in my mind in the times that I am reflecting”
 
“Delegate, delegate, delegate.”
 
“Find those people in your building that are aspiring leaders and don’t be afraid to delegate those out.”
 
“Any experience was one of value to me.”
 
“Motivation equals value over effort is something in every instructional work team meeting, I brought up because in this COVID time and state of education as a whole, teacher motivation was lacking. 
 
“What do we value as educators? What does each teacher value in their role? And how can I as the leader minimize the effort it takes for them to accomplish that goal?... and then that motivation just… you can see it.”
 
“That formula is something that I took back immediately and is actionable in all entities in our operations of our school building.”
 
“Honing in on how a 5-minute experience with a teacher can have such a big impact and it only takes 5 minutes.”
 
“I knew about APEx, I knew it was directly for assistant principals. So I went to the website, gathered as much as I could of giving that overview of what I would get from the experience and shared that with my principal who then requested the funds for the use of being part of the APEx program.”
 
“Who do you collaborate with regularly and if you feel like you don’t have those people that pop into your mind immediately, try to build that because the collaboration piece has been some of the best professional growth that I have received.”
 
“We are your mentors? If you just think your principal, start broadening who else you could be reaching out to and who else would be willing to mentor you. And then who do you mentor? Because it’s a pipeline.”
 
 
Frederick: 
“That growth mindset starts with us, it starts with administrators”
 
“If we are going, going, going, and we never create that space [for reflection], then that stuff is just flying around our brains all the time”
 
”We don’t manage time, we manage priorities”
 
“A lot of people say ‘I want to be more balanced in my life’. There was one time when I really had achieved balance between family, and profession, and social life, And you know what, I was mediocre at everything”
 
“I have moved from the model of balance to juggling, because when you’re juggling you get one thing up in the air, then you forget about it for a minute while you go to the next thing, and you are 100% focused on that one thing. And I think that is more the path to happiness and satisfaction because none of us want to be mediocre all the time”
 
“Get away from the idea of balancing time, get away from the idea of managing time, manage your priorities and then juggle so that you are 100% focused in the moment”
 
“This fall in APEx we are really going to double down on the instructional leadership piece”
 
“We don’t have enough time, we don’t have enough money, but the other thing we don’t get enough of is attention. That’s what that 5-minute coaching does. It 100% of our presence as leaders with the people that we are serving.”
 
Summary of Peer coaching (from 30-minute mark):
·      SC requires a mid-year SLO (teacher evaluation component) conference.
·      Admin provided opportunity for teachers to do peer observations as part of the SLO process.
·      Admin determined who would visit who and neither teacher knew in advance.
·      Principal went with the teacher to do the peer observation.
·      AP covered class prior to arts block
·      Teacher returned to AP during arts block to debrief with AP.
 
 
 
Links:
The Assistant Principal Podcast website: https://www.frederickbuskey.com/appodcast.html
Sign up for the daily leadership email: https://mailchi.mp/c15c68e6df32/specialedition
Blog: www.frederickbuskey.com/blog (reposts of the daily email)

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