When I decided to open ACT I knew what I wanted and what I didn't want. I suppose I had a vision of what I thought I could achieve - even though, in hindsight, it was a rather altruistic vision.
I didn't want a bum's on seat mentality. I wanted to 'see' my learners not a £ pound sign sat in class. I didn't want to wave goodbye to the learner at the end of their course. I wanted to offer an all round service that would see them progress through courses and training until they were equipped with the right skills & confidence to gain employment....Did you know I recently bought a Bridge?
I suppose the Teachers who read this will be defending my dream but the business men among you will be shaking their heads in disgust and muttering 'stupid cow' under their breath. It's a good job I have thick skin.
Last week I had a visit from a Business Link advisor (we'll call him Bob for the sake of anonymity) and my life changed drastically as a result of his visit. I'm not going to moan and complain about Bob even though he took my dreams, shook them and then threw them back in my face.
Was it cruel? Undoubtedly...Was he right?....Definately......Was it the wake up call I desperately needed?....Yes, yes, yes....Thank you Bob (you know who you are).
So now I've had my wake up call and I've had to rethink. Am I now a hardened business woman who envisages £ signs sitting in class? I don't think so. I still retain a slight blush of pink to my glasses. But, I have taken on board what was said and have spent my time more pro-actively this week.
I grew a pair of you know whats! I now say NO and mean it. We have opened a charity for the altruistic side of my nature (http://www.esolrochdale.org/) or my expensive hobby as Bob called it! I have learnt to say NO....and mean it. Bob will be proud. I bit my tongue and did the necessary networking (which I hate). I smiled, chatted, handed out leaflets and even gave an impromptu presentation.
It has made me reflect on what I've been doing since January. Teachers are always taught to reflect, learn and improve and I do, where teaching is concerned. Why did I not carry it over to the business side?
Has the well aimed and executed kick in the ass worked? Well my inbox is full and so is my calendar for the next couple of weeks.
Thanks Bob - keep up the good work x