One of the most common coaching questions that I receive is (typically posed in an exasperated way by a stressed-out, maxed-out coach!): HOW ON EARTH DO I SCHEDULE MY DAY SO I GET SOME SORT OF COACHING DONE?
Well – I’m going to show you how to do that.
BUT…before I show you how, I want you to know this one thing: You cannot say “yes” to everything. You will have to say no to some things to make room for your coaching. It’s not possible to do it all.
(I know it’s hard, but it’s NOT impossible!)
Okay…so onto the steps!
Make Your Monthly List (master dump list) by brainstorming everything you have to do, prep, attend and produce.
For example, a dump list could include things like this:
- prep for 7th grade science demo
- 5th, 6th, 7th grade grade level team meetings
- finish the grade level team master report and distribute to team leaders
- meet with Jerry and Heather about next month’s PD for math teachers
- study research report for district coaching meeting
- email (45 minutes/day)
- schedule debriefings for 8 coaching sessions
…you get the idea. EVERY SINGLE THING goes onto the list.
Then, dump list into four columns
–3: Would be nice, but not necessary/little to no long-term consequence
–2: Necessary but no firm deadline/no consequence within 1-2 weeks
–1: Absolutely must get done/immediate consequence this week
–0: If I had all the time in the world, this might be interesting to complete
So, here’s the thing: You’ve gotta be honest about what is TRULY important…the system for scheduling just won’t work if you mark everything a “1”!
Look at your list of the tasks/items that you marked a “1”
Here’s what the breakdown of tasks should be:
30% Preparation for coaching and facilitating/attending team meetings/research/data
20% Non-coaching obligations/paperwork
10% Miscellaneous/Unexpected detours
If you’re radically off in your percentages, don’t say, “This Jill Jackson doesn’t understand coaching! She hasn’t been a coach for years! Blah, blah, blah!” What you need to do is go back to your list and be VERY stingy with your “1” scores! Keep refining your list.
Now, each week you go to your master list for the month and you start to pull the #1 scores and make sure they get on your calendar first. Here’s a sample of what it looks like:
Notice, the colors relate to the tasks above (coaching is red, prep for coaching is green, etc.)
The deal is this: You cannot leave all of your coaching tasks to the end of the day. You need to build in time for prepping for your coaching…but you also have to be very choosy about HOW you spend your time. Again, you will have to say no. And that’s okay!
So…give yourself 15 minutes to start your brain dumping…see what happens!