Teaching Learning Leading K-12
Episode 46: Building Relationships with Hugh Kight

Episode 46: Building Relationships with Hugh Kight

February 10, 2015

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Hugh Kight is the principal of East Laurens Elementary School in Laurens County, Georgia.

Laurens is Hugh’s home. He grew up here, attended school, and eventually became a teacher and principal here.

Hugh is actually retired but “Un-retired” to be the principal of East Laurens.

Between his amazing energy and contagious smile he is someone who everyone should get to know. Just spend a few minutes with him and whatever troubles you will wilt away as you will see the silver linings, feel the sunshine, and want to smile…because you know that all will be good.

Mr. Kight is always looking for methods to recognize success. He connects with kids and, staff, and the community. He wants to find unique ways of saying … “Good Work! Keep it Up!”

Hence the Falcon Fun Zone!

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A place where the teachers and staff can schedule to send kids who have demonstrated hard work, success, and achievement! A place where the kids earn time to play…(check out the pics of the many games and activities)! What an amazing idea!!!

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By the way, the teachers have also been able to find time to initiate the room! (And the paintings of characters on the walls were created by a staff member!)

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Hugh also has his Coca-Cola Diner…It's not sponsored by the corporation…but it grew out of an idea for having a room to celebrate and connect with others. Hugh is known for his cooking skills…just ask anyone about the chicken dinners!

In this room he often feeds staff, students, families, and community members. The walls have the school’s test scores and other data to show their gains and successes. Feels like you are visiting family…

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Hugh likes to visit garage sales and flea markets…this is what led to his decorations for the room…Check out some of the really cool Coke artifacts!!!

I challenge you to think about the ways that Hugh has created to celebrate, connect, and build relationships and develop your own. It will inspire your kids to do well. It will help your staff feel valued and it will help you connect with the parents and community.

Enjoy!

Length: 37:26

Episode 35: The Law of the Inner Circle and Team Building

Episode 35: The Law of the Inner Circle and Team Building

October 5, 2014

According to John Maxwell, "A leader's potential is determined by those closest to him."

John notes, "When you have the right staff, potential skyrockets."

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The team or organization leader needs team members he/she chooses. Many times they can inherit and/or have someone from higher up in the organization want to add people to the team.  This is unfortunate and can cause issues of with results orientation and effectiveness. When given the opportunity to select his/her own team mates the leader needs to take advantage of this to select the best and the brightest that will bring their special attributes to the team.

It is important for the leader to recognize that he/she wants to select those individuals who address the weaknesses of the leader not clones of the leader.

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( Patrick Lencioni )

The leader has to take time to support and develop that team that will become his inner circle. This is the group that will connect with each other and will develop a deep sense of trust to the organization, the leader and accomplishing the mission. Check out Patrick Lencioni's The Five Dysfunctions of the Team.


This does not happen overnight it requires the leader spending time developing his team.

This means interacting with each other not just in meetings and eating together. It means having an opportunity to laugh and play together and to experience turmoil and difficulty together.

Check out my thoughts about playing soccer, racing cars, the fluer-di-lis, and the lightening bolt.

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It also means that the leader needs to find out what training and coaching they need and insure that they get it.

As a note, it is possible that you will make a bad selection for the team, the leader has to be willing to address that because it is a weakness for the team that will disrupt success.

I hope that you enjoy this episode and I challenge you to take the time to examine your organization and ask yourself …

Do you have an inner circle?

Do you support them?

Does someone not need to be on that team?

Some words of wisdom from John Maxwell:

"One of the mistakes I often made early in my career as a team leader was that I thought everyone who was on my team should remain on my team."-John Maxwell

"Hire the best staff you can find, develop them as much as you can, and hand off everything you possibly can to them."-John Maxwell

Recommended Reading:

John Maxwell's:

The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership

The 17 Indisputable Laws of Teamwork

Patrick Lencioni's:

The Five Dysfunctions of a Team

Also, you can subscribe to John Maxwell's Minute with Maxwell

A daily dose of leadership advice from John at no cost to you.

Enjoy!

Length: 31:21

Episode 31: Trust- The Key to Team Building

Episode 31: Trust- The Key to Team Building

August 27, 2014

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When a leader is assigned to an organization…success or stumbling is determined by the individual's plans for making change. 

Is it... I am here to save the day and we will proceed according to my plans or is there an attempt at creating a team mentality which means that the leader is working to create trust?

Leadership requires more than a plan but time spent purposefully building trust.

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As Seth Godin, in Tribes, comments...  “Leadership is not management.”

This means that you have to get others on board…you have to spend time building a team…and creating a trusting organization…avoiding…It’s my way or the highway…Not just thinking that I only have to tell people what to do and they will do it.

Throughout this episode I reflect on comments from the works of Dan Pink, P. Lencioni, and J. Maxwell.

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After listening, I hope that you will spend some time evaluating your team direction and decide whether you have created real trust. Ask yourself…Do your members really interact with each other or are they simply complying for fear of retribution or being wrong?

Enjoy!

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Listed below are the links to books that I mentioned as well as the opening YouTube clip. I hope that you will take time to explore these wonderful tools for developing your teams.

Patrick Lencioni YouTube Clip from Opening

5 Dysfunctions of a Team

The Advantage

Winning With People by John Maxwell

The 17 Indisputable laws of Team Work by John Maxwell

Tribes by Seth Godin

To Sell is Human by Daniel Pink

Drive by Daniel Pink

 

Length 28:30