Goal-Setting for Principals

Our September NAESP Twitter chat on goal-setting helped education leaders identify barriers to success like lack of time or fear of failure and develop a plan to overcome them to reach their goals.
September 2018, Volume 42, Issue 1

School is back in session—and so is the NAESP chat. On Wednesday, Sept. 19, host Adam Welcome, author of the new Run Like a Pirate book, led a discussion on goal-setting.

Welcome channeled personal experience as he led tweeters on a journey from identifying goals to recognizing roadblocks in the way of those goals and then to making a plan to work around those roadblocks to find success. And this PLN was there for it.

Barriers to Success

Welcome asked the group to consider what keeps them from going for their goals. Participants overwhelmingly cited similar reasons: fear of failure, finances, and time. Here’s more, in their words.

@ellen_oneill said, “Fear of failure. Being a perfectionist has its drawbacks.”

“Sometimes fear for disrupting what has always been done, rocking the boat too often. However, if I know it is best for my staff and especially my students there is nothing that will stop me. 100 percent all the time,” said @PrincipalKap.

@PrincipalYoung said, “Finances. Doctoral programs are an expensive goal when your child is only 2 years away from their own college experience.”

“Time! Finding the balance between my life (wife, 4 kids, health) and making the time needed to better myself and achieve my goals,” said @rbreyer51.


Overcoming Roadblocks

As common as these reasons are, they’re not easy to conquer. So Welcome encouraged tweeters to find ways to overcome these roadblocks to achieving their goals. Their answers?

@MillerDan_KHS said, “Be efficient at managing your time. Furthermore, make time for certain things. A pet peeve of mine is when someone says ‘I don’t have time.’ We all have plenty of time. The key is how we choose to use it.”

“I’m a huge fan of tech. But I write my goals down. It feels good to mark it achieved with a No. 2 pencil,” said @eppand.

@Emersizzle said, “Time! So prioritizing kid-centered tasks first is a must. The other things I can get to when I get to it. I try not to ever break a promise to a kiddo. Today I promised my 5th graders we would have book group. It barely fit in the day, but it mattered to them.”

Setting Goals

Then it was goal-setting time. It was a good mix of professional and personal goals. Here are a handful of their tweets to give you some inspiration.

@BlossJulie said, “I want to read as many of the books as possible in our school library so that I can better suggest reading items to student, staff and families. Big goal!”

“I’m going to start saying NO more. It’s hard for me to turn things/people down, but it’s time,” said @mradamwelcome. And he wasn’t alone in this. Many tweeters commented they felt the same way.

@Mccoyedu said, “I need to do better at delegating and giving opportunities to others to free up time for things I really want to focus on.”

“I am going to look in the mirror and say ‘Catherine, YOU GOT THIS! YOU CAN DO IT!’ Reflecting on your own look can be such a powerful tool to keep you inspired,” said @catherinepybar1.

@PrincipalFrench said, “Get up early, work efficiently, strengthen relationships, collaborate, be present.”

What’s the goal you’re proudest of accomplishing? How’d you make it happen? #NAESPchat is still active on Twitter. So join in and share your stories with us!

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