Like most people I look forward to my Summer Holidays but I also enjoy watching those I work alongside pop off on theirs too. There seems to be something quite magical about a Summer Holiday.
Every four years my holidays are enhanced by the wonderful spectacle that is the Olympics. This year Team GB excelled with a superb haul of Gold, Silver and Bronze medals, which is a significant improvement from 1996 where Team GB was deemed to be a significant failure.
This got me to thinking about achievement and barometers of success.
As an Educationalist, at heart, I am always concerned with how success is measured against peer achievement.
I am quite aware that parents will openly extol the abilities of their children in front of others. “Our Johnny learnt to ride his bike last week – he found it quite easy.”
In reality the opposite is probably true, “Our Johnny has been toiling week in week out and can finally, albeit it wobbly, get to the end of the street without damaging all of the neighbours cars and without me using every profanity known to man.”
The same is true socially – during my teaching days I was always wary of the parents who would use, as a badge of honour, the academic achievements of their children. It was quite often these pupils I would look at through a classroom window as they struggled to play age appropriate games with their peers.
Success is often quantified in terms of peer related progress but in day to day reality this is rarely the case.
I suppose the argument is relative that after an education journey is completed it is rare to find a situation where individuals are placed in an age related peer situation again.
Could you imagine the legal challenges, if on your first day in a new job your line manager separated you into a room defined by your age?
At Advocate we only employ office staff that are experienced in their sector so they completely understand what relative success is and how we can support our field staff to achieve this.
In order to achieve this we use an ‘open door’ policy. That means we’re always happy to chat through situations and scenarios and we encourage our field staff to do this with one another. Which brings me, nicely, to our family BBQ evening.
On Thursday 15th September between 4pm and 7pm we’re going to meet on the beach at Tynemouth for BBQ, beach fun and a chance to catch up.
All are welcome to roll up your trouser legs, tuck your socks into your shoes and join Advocate for a paddle!