I’ve spent years as a supervisor, a mentor and a coach. And before that, a good number of years learning how to be each of the above. Over those years, I have learned from some of the finest supervisors, mentors and coaches. I have devoured books on each of those subjects.
After all is said and done, I have distilled my approach in each area to three words: Towards What End?
That question is as the core of my supervisory, coaching and mentoring conversations. Towards What End are you working in the way you work? Towards What End did you implement program A or B? Towards What End are you learning a certain new approach? Towards What End are you teaching this subject and in this way?
Towards What End isn’t a one-time question. It’s a way of thinking that I use in my practice as an educational leader, a manager, a coach and a mentor. And even when a client or someone who works for me answers the question, it’s often followed up by another Towards What End question.
There’s a method to it: Building the capacity to be a thoughtful professional and person; becoming reflective in our work and lives; and being vision driven in all things.
How about you? Do you have a question or statement that drives your work and your life? A question or statement that defines your approach to supervision, management, coaching or mentoring?