First Day of School – 4 Relationship Focused Tips
The first day of school is upon us. Some schools start back on Monday while others will be starting in the next few weeks. You can feel the excitement and just like in the corporate world this is your Grand Opening! Never forget that it is grand… a new beginning and great opportunity to change lives, build relationships and you are in the driver’s seat.
Here are 4 quick things to remember for the first day of school.
This is the time to be out of your office all day. Shaking hands and kissing babies…. one might say. Be visible, to the families of your school and to your staff. When opening anything for the first time, allowing people to see you and know that you are in control brings about a sense of comfort. I remember my dad opening up many cafeterias throughout the state of Florida and on the GRAND OPENING day, he was out and about. Front of the house, (dining room) taking the pulse of his guests. He was visible and he was the smile that told customers your food was made with love and we would love to see you again. Builds relationships with the families that you serve.
Check on the Newbies
Check on your new staff throughout the day. See if they have the items that they need and that they are feeling great. Drop off a piece of candy and a quick note: “You’re doing great!”, 50 cents on their desk for a soda on their lunch break is another great accompaniment to an encouraging note. Start the new year on the right positive note. When my dad would open a new restaurant he would be there encouraging the staff all the way throughout the day. Patting people on the back, checking to make certain they were game on. Check on people, let them know you’ve got their back. It goes a long way! Builds relationships with your new staff.
Assign People to Tasks
Place nothing on your plate, if you can help it. Assign others to tasks that will be happening during the day, your name should be next to NOTHING. You are the face of the school. As the principal, every child that walks into your school is YOUR student. YOU are responsible for every one of them; their safety, their social growth, their academic achievement and their excitement to come back the next day. Stay open and free to welcome your students, check on them throughout the day and chat with them at lunch. (Most) Everything will wait for you till tomorrow. Builds relationships with your administrative team and support staff.
Expect the Unexpected
Before day one, sit down with staff that have been at your school for…ever and brainstorm the unexpected. Make a list and make a plan for if it happens. And it will happen! Oh… will it ever happen! Builds relationships with long-standing teachers and staff.