Was sitting in a Turkish café in Hong Kong recently having a quiet meal and the waiter Nevzat Durmus, sat down and started conversing.
Man, what this guy didn’t know about geopolitics probably didn’t matter, let alone exist. He had a wide range of knowledge regarding a range of different topics.
In real school management it’s a similar thing. Amongst us on a daily basis hugely talented people are within our breathing space, yet we so often overlook them, because we fail to see or value their potency let alone their potential.
Helping to grow people professionally
As an Iwi leader, I have a responsibility to identify and prosper our future leaders, like most. Sometimes they are in humble positions within your very organisation and they are mouse quiet either in voice or about their potential.
Other times they are noisy, sometimes about the fact that they were incarcerated during their lives at the behest of HM Hotel service.
I have been a car enthusiast all of my life (another name for a petrol head I suppose) so I often look at cars or motorcycles at what they are going to be or could be looking like in 12 months’ time. It’s the same with staff. “How can I be part of the facilitation of this person’s professional development?” This I believe, is the art of vision management.
Employing people with their potential in mind, often women but not always, frequently sole parents are wonderful vessels of knowledge and survival.
Sole parents understand frugality, challenge, sadness and vision. Sole parents are veterans of everything and this in reality is part of their unrecognised currency.
The work we do interacting with humans, these people trained in this every day with their babies. People who have been through hardship, they talk differently, you can hear the wisdom in their kōrero – but you have to listen.
Setting the environment to effectively utilize this latent presently invisible skill requires organisations and managers to be listeners and hear the views of staff and to provide environments for them to express their views. They did not leave school at an early age, schools often left them in some of the most damaging and sometimes humiliating ways. It’s painful in memory, and the thought of repeating that voluntarily as an adult is somewhat repulsive to their present mindset.
Fuelling the dream
But you can see in their hearts, through their eyes, this is what they want. To fulfil what was once a failure into a formidable future they only dreamed of.
Our job is to tune into their vision and manifest it for all of us. Keeping the pressure on to help realise their dream that will either directly or indirectly benefit the Iwi.
At Ngai Te Rangi, nobody gets bonded when we pay for their study and release people to study on pay and work time. They may work in administration, and they study social work, but our society needs more trained social workers. But its more than that, it’s a direct challenge on education deprivation of our people.
He may qualify in social work and because he had been in jail he will never be a registered social worker, but he has within his grasp a life that he was till then merely a spectator in.
It may mean that I might have to do without an admin person for several weeks per annum – that’s ok as it makes sure I increase my admin skill and self-reliance – I have a role to play as well and I must also do my bit for others education emancipation. Keeping in mind, that we are educating our people, for the world not just for us.
By Paora Stanley, CEO, Ngāi Te Rangi
“I write for this magazine because I enjoy cognitive inspiration.”