A JOURNEY TOWARDS SELF REALIZATION – THE 5 LEVELS OF SCHOOL OWNERS
By David Adeniji – 08069462143 – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Now, to begin with, I must point out that there are actually 5 levels of school owners as listed Below:
LEVEL 0 – THE TEACHER
LEVEL 1 – THE SELF EMPLOYED
LEVEL 2 – THE MANAGER
LEVEL 3 – THE SCHOOL OWNER
LEVEL 4 – THE INVESTOR
LEVEL 5 – THE ENTREPRENEUR
And so the implementation every strategy we share on this will depend largely on what level you are. But whichever level you are, the principles have been tested to be workable.
The truth is, we are not all on the same level in any of life’s endeavor, and therefore a good understanding of your identity, why you are where you are and knowing what to do to move to a next level will shape your mind newly, help you to implement and execute appropriately the principles you learn or any idea you come across
So let’s take them one after the other.
- A) Almost Everyone starts out here. Every teacher is a potential school owner. The teacher earns salary, obeys instruction, performs optimally only when his work is inspected regularly and if he’s in the private sector as most of us are, he operates under this subtle fear of losing his Job. Bottom line, he’s afraid of loosing his monthly pay alert.
- B) This informs most of his decisions, actions and performance. There’s really no fixed behavior to expect from employees. Their performance is dependent on three basic things – Pay alert, Welfare packages, Oga’s interests, emotions and their own personal emotions. They cannot run their own vision in the business. The best of teachers only find a meaningful interpretation and expression for their own life’s passion and vision through the employer’s vision…. *And that is being smart*.
*WERE YOU A SMART EMPLOYEE?*
- C) Now I know I’m speaking to school owners, but access yourself holistically in light of the above statements…when you were a teacher, were you smart?
- D) Many school owners find it hard now that they’ve started their own school because they missed the two most important reasons to be a teacher before starting their own school
- To gain managerial experience, *not necessarily teaching experience*
- To save up and raise enough capital to start strong
- E) Ok, so you were the best mathematics teacher or a very experience biology mistress. With you in the external exams team, your proprietor/tress is rest assured in that subject. It’s a proud thing to be almost indispensable.
But teaching experience is not the major kind of experience to start a school and run it successfully.
Ever wondered why there are many who own mega schools today and are doing well in business but were not really teachers in the the educational field? Well, you may argue that they’re only in it for the money, but you’re in it for the passion.
*You may need to re-access that judgment.*
Truth is, teaching experience is not the only form of experience you need for running a good school business. You need a sound grasp though, but you need much, much more than that.
In all of your 15, 20, 25 years of teaching experience, how many times did you (as a person) recruit, hire, negotiate salary, bargain with book suppliers, terminate staff appointment, interact with estate agents, settle with omo-onilè (Land Agenys) and CDA….the list goes on.
How many times did you go and practically beg parents at night not to withdraw their 4 kids abruptly from your school knowing this might create a ripple effect since these parents are highly influential? Yes! School owners do. I know you know now.
How many times did the bank call to remind you to fund your account to repay your credit, or how many times did you rack your head when the month is about to end and you have salaries to pay?
See, all you did was remain loyal, work extra hard, spend time, teach well, avoid queries, and most assuredly collect your salary every month.
So you may not have learnt to be a school owner. You only learnt to be a very good teacher.
If the above describes you (when you were an employee) then it may explain why your learning curve was long.
Please visit esmspro.com/a-journey-towards-self-realization-the-5-levels-of-school-owners-part-1/
- Learn how to run a business (innovation, marketing, negotiation).
- Attend a Business Class, get an MBA, Enroll for leadership Classes, pick a book on Emotional intelligence, negotiating, communication, project management, etc. Learn to Lead, manage, market and create new trends.
- Let others help with producing the product the business sells. You will simply pay them
III. Courage means having fear and doubt but taking action anyway. So, shift your thought process from that of fear to that of trust – in God, in yourself, in that you’ll make mistakes and recover.
The lesson here is that we must never live any season or any time idle. We must cease to engage in activities that don’t add value for tomorrow. We must however strive to maximize the now.
*WHAT WE ARE NOW IS A FUNCTION WHAT WE DID YESTERDAY*
So don’t take time for granted. The School you have today is a product of yesterday’s dream. How large or good or established it is now is how much you saw of it few years ago.
*So it’s time to dream another dream, see a bigger vision, chart a wider course, fly a bit higher and see a farther horizon.*
*The SELF EMPLOYED SCHOOL OWNER*
You started your school with very little capital, this is usually the first jump on the school entrepreneurial ladder and for most, it’s the only jump. They just stay there. It’s a little above the teacher level because the school owner still does some chunk of the teaching and running around. You may even find yourself driving the children to school at times. You probably also cannot afford to pay yourself salary yet.
The Self employed school owner may see him/herself as still having a teaching job. That must change
It Looks like a sense of newly found freedom, but it really is not, its harder work. Harder than that of the teacher. There’s a lot of hope and ambition as if it’s going to just become mega in just a few months.
More often, what informed the self employed school owner is this:
You were working for someone else and you keep thinking these three things to yourself:
I can do a better job than them
How come they get all the money, when I do all the work? And
If I owned this school, I’d be the boss, I’d make everyone else do the work, I’d relax, I may not need to be in school always, I’d work a lot less. For everyone who jumped from being an employee (a teacher) to just becoming a self employed school owner, one thing runs through their mind
*I’m finally going to be the boss*
And with that, the race starts
Most, if not all of us have taken this step. It’s the most rewarding step you’ll ever take, But it’s certainly not the bus stop. Let’s see how to step up higher
Whearas, the emotional driving force behind most teachers is *JOB SECURITY*, You as a Self Employed School Owner is driven by another force:
*The desire to Control Our Own Lives And Our Own Destiny*
- A) PLEASE AVOID THE TRAP
If what you know how to do best is TEACH and you believe you’re the best teacher in the world, then chances are you may be trapped if you have a school. Because you know almost everything about every other person’s job and you want to do it with them or for them if they fail. You may not have time to do anything else (dangerous). So you just find yourself working round the clock – doing what everyone else is doing and doing more than everyone else.
2) DREAM ANOTHER DREAM
Now you’re in control and you think you’re the best guy around, more experienced than all – But it’s dangerous if you don’t have a vision of doing something else. Don’t let your entire vision be limited by your previous training as a teacher.
When you start a school, you must start with the end in mind. You should know that you’re creating something that will work without you. So don’t Micro-manage – involved in every nitty-gritty. *RAISE PEOPLE* to do things
If you’re on this Level, then do the following
*NOW GO AHEAD AFTER TODAY, DISCIPLINE YOUR MIND TO ENVISION WHAT YOU SEE AS THE FUTURE OF THAT SCHOOL, THEN TAKE THE PAIN TO PUT IT ON PAPER. AS MUCH AS YOU IMAGINE AND AS FAR AS YOU CAN SEE – FOR YOUR SCHOOL*
It may take days, weeks, months or even up to a year. But do it, until you have a document you can go back to.
3) For you as a Self employed School Owner – know that business is not necessarily being busy working *in* the school, but being busy working
*on* the school. You’re not an employee in your school, you’re the employer. Your job is to grow your school
*WHAT YOU NEED TO LEARN AT THIS STAGE*
- A) School Registration, Tax filing, SUBEB, WAEC, NECO, JAMB, Ministry of Edication, etc
- B) Basic Accounting and Book Keeping
- C) Becoming a great sales person – marketing, getting prospects and discipling them
- D) Now, you still work long hours, but certainly not teaching or coaching or marking, but doing the 3 items above and 3 items below
- E) Smart Cost Reduction means – saving, borrowing, recycling, improvising etc
- F) Make as many connections as possible using yesterday’s methods of enlarging your sphere of influence.
- G) Learn Self discipline, Responsibility and accountability to self and to others – even to subordinates
Break down the new enlarged vision you wrote down above into goals, create a position chart of who should do what (even if they’re not yet available). Write position statements for each position and identify where you are on that position chart. Then as you grow in resources, systematically push to fill those positions with the best possible individuals at reasonable costs.
This is a whole new level. Now You have and pay staff – academic and non academic. But you still work even harder – longer hours – than any of them, doing your own work and fixing up the mistakes of everyone around you. You’re probably the accountant yourself and so your head is always bubbling with figures and merchants.
THANK GOD YOU’VE LEARNT ALL YOU DEEDED TO LEARN AS A SELF-EMPLOYED SCHOOL OWNER
Now growing your school from level 1 to this level 2 is not easy at all as some of us may be facing now. If you have skipped any of the learning items in level one, it even gets more daunting
*THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE HERE IS WHO DO I DELEGATE MY SCHOOL’S VISION GOALS TO. CAN THESE SENIOR EMPLOYEES BE TRUSTED. HOPE THEY WILL NOT HIJACK MY SCHOOL FROM ME IF I GIVE THEM TOO MUCH POWER.*
At this level, your school is already seemingly looking ‘big’. Please don’t be tempted to stop working long hours secretly on your school. Don’t ever say, ‘Ive made it’. Cashflow management, team building and leadership setting is what you need most at this stage
The size of your wage bill is not an indication of how successful (more than the rest of us) you are. The more you hire, the finer your processes must be. Otherwise, the school will run into hitches
IF YOU’RE ON THIS LEVEL, HERE’S WHAT YOU SHOULD BE LEARNING AND DOING
- Team building. Read a book on team building . It’s the toughest subject at this level, your school is growing, you need to build teams among your employees to handle various aspects of the school. You need to stop seeing your staff as just teachers. They should be mentored to mentor, trained to market, raised to sell, and so on. You owe them all these. If you succeed at building them effectively into teams that will teach them new things, you’ll have more freedom and they’ll trust you more with their lives.
- With team building comes the challenge of delegation and leadership
III. Learn to handle growth, cashflow, suppliers, taming and discipling impossible parents/teachers and so on
- Look for a book on emotional intelligence Read and digest it. That’s all I can say here.
- NOW THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT – Learn Resource allocation. The manager must listen to all but do the most important things first with the limited resources at every given time. Don’t allow desperate and aggressive mechants (marketers and suppliers) pressure you into paying for products or services not on top of your priority list. Please don’t wait for a big mistake to teach you this.
- Learn to process many decisions in your mind at the same time. The school is always very busy, active and sometimes volatile. Spending an hour at least everyday to think through the possible happenings and outcomes of the day will seriously help you through this.
*THE SCHOOL OWNER*
– At this level, you no more trade time for money, what your school makes is no more function of how long you as the owner stay there. Your school now seemingly runs well without your physical presence. You’ve moved from working in the business to working on the business. The problem here is that at this level many school owners retire! No, you can’t afford to. Very soon, a competitor will open very close to you, copy all that makes you stand out, probably younger and smarter than you. If care is not taken, you lose the school. Trust me, I have seen this several instances over. I can name you those schools at this level 10 years ago. Now, they’re no more.
*WHY BIG SCHOOLS FOLD UP*
‘But almost every other business have the tendency of folding up’, you may want to quickly argue. But I tell you, the rate at which seemingly big schools are closing down is quite alarming.
‘Its due to recession’, someone else may argue. But that argument is lame.
10 years ago, I know of very big schools that ruled their vicinity, but now are out of business. I’ve helped in rebuilding some of them. In my over a decade or so of networking with school owners, especially big school owners, I studied some character traits common to a number of them. if you happen to fall within this category, don’t take offence, let’s grow together.
I said something yesterday, I think I need to repeat it now. It’s the first thing I discovered.
*The size of your wage bill is not an indication of how successful you are*.
As your wage bill grow, so should your intelligence.
*Everyone around may tell you just what you want to hear, but look for those who disagree with you, bring them close and reason privately at their criticisms*
*Unlike when you were just starting out as a Self Employed School Owner or Just Manager, at this level, you need to stop expecting cheap alternatives always. This may be difficult for you at first, but trust me, you will soon get used to it. Truth is, excellent alternatives are not always the cheapest alternatives
*Never end a term without an innovation, some will cost you money, please spend it. Wisely, but purposefully. It’s dangerous to get complacent because of your size. You’re Big, yes, but what will make you survive this stage is not just your
sizeable population and
high school fees compared with others.
Instead, it’s all of the above plus
At this level of *School Owner*, you need to learn to let go. Your relationship with your business will be a whole lot different. You’ll most probably lean back in your chair, sigh, and say, “I’ve made it! I’m here at last and this is fun.”
Let me point out something here before we go on any further. It’s usually at this stage that the the School Owner stops forging ahead. This is extremely dangerous because if a school stops growing, it begins dying. It’s no different than a tree. If a tree is is not growing, it starts dying. It’s that simple.
At this level of the *School Owner*, you’ll suddenly find out you have a whole lot of time on your hands than you ever had before – and you may not be used to it. And for good reason. At this level, you already have at least 3 things going for you that *Managers* don’t have.
You’ll have good systems in place and so your people can get on with the job without your having to be there.
You’ll have a team instead of simply having a bunch of teachers/employees
And by now, you’ll conveniently have a Head Of School
You easily trust your team leaders’ judgment
You’re no more a hands-on person in the school. You now concentrate on the big picture. Now, your focus is no longer on cashflow (others do that for you), but on profit.
*WHAT YOU SHOULD BE DOING AT THIS LEVEL*
Investment, investment, investment! It’s time to spread your wings and fly. By now you have built a system that is working. Now, you need to start planting new annexes, investing in new horizons and more edu-businesses. What you should be aiming at now
I WILL BE TALTING MORE EXTENSIVELY ABOUT THIS LEVEL AND THE REMAINING TWO LEVELS IN OUR FORTHCOMING SOF OUTDOOR SESSION. IT WILL HOLD FEBRUARY, 2018. PLEASE KEEP INVITING MORE SCHOOL OWNERS TO JOIN THIS PLATFORM. AT THE SOF OUTDOOR SESSION, THE FOLLOWING SHOULD BE EXPECTED
- Networking Sessions
- Brainstorming Sessions
- Strategic meet-ups with School Resource
- Advanced Innovation and School Marketing Sessions
- Advanced Educational technology discovery sessions
- Full exposition on all subjects ever discussed on the platform and more
- School Consultancy
- Introduction to the Thinkage Complete School Growth Strategy
- Practical hands on Training for moving from one level to another
- Introduction to the smartest School Management Software and Mobile App
*THE INVESTOR School Owner*
– A whole new level of School Ownership. An investor School Owner think according to the rule of zeros. This rule says: How many zeros are you comfortable playing with every term? The investor school owner has more than one thriving school annex, not struggling ones. You’re always thing of where the market (children population) is large and you can conveniently invest to take advantage of the business there. To be at this level, your school fees is definitely a few zeros – probably from five zeros. But be careful, you’re not at your peak yet.
*THE ENTREPRENEUR School Owner* – Now you’ve arrived. I will only talk about this at our first physical seminar – Coming Up Soon!
NB: If you however need more help with the implementation of these strategies or you need more of our consultancy or various trainings needed to execute these strategies effectively, please call the project coordinator on 08069462143, email: email@example.com. Thanks
CORPORATE GOVERNANCE IN SCHOOL
SimplIfied: A system by which companies are directed and controlled. Who do you mean by SYSTEM? I mean business processes?
Ok, what are processes?
They’re carefully programmed and thought through guidelines on the same things you know and do consciously or unconsciously in the day to day, week to week, termly and sessional running of the school
Building a school PROCESS can be compared with writing a guiding document that describes the working of every aspect of your school.
Now, It’s One Thing To Build The Processes, But It’s Another Thing To GOVERN the School With The Processes
Up till now, you’ve probably been doing it the conventional way, WHICH IS OK– have a school, build the structure, employ teachers, employ HMs, Principal, Admins, then give them charge over the other staffs, follow government guidelines, give them targets…etc – ALL THAT IS OK, BUT THERE’S A BETTER WAY
A business process is a series of steps performed by a group of stakeholders to achieve a concrete goal. Each step in a business process denotes a task that is assigned to a participant. It is the fundamental building block for business structure
It’s hard work, But it’s interesting. You want to develop a STRUCTURE, that will govern, or at least serve as a template for the behavior of anybody who works in your organization.
CORPORATE STRUCTURE = MANY PROCESSES
I will not speak too much grammar here, but understand it. It’s like writing a book chapter by chapter, where each chapter represents the various operational PROCESSES of the school, detailing the various agents involved in that aspect, their expected behavior and YOUR OWN EXPECTATION OF THEM. What they should do, how they should do it, the challenges they’re likely to have, how they should solve it and finally, the results expected of them.
NO PROCESS, NO BUSINESS, NO CORPORATE STRUCTURE
PROCESS, SYSTEM, CORPORATE STRUCTURE, POLICY – may actually all refer to the same thing
It’s the homework of the business owner that governs the performance of the people he brings on board and makes sure they don’t derail from the original vision. And also makes sure every resource is put to the best use
See yourself as an eagle, that sees from the top. Your executives however smart are playing on the field. Your Developed PROCESS should guide them and make you rest assured you’re making progress. It reduces the amount of time people spend thinking of what to do and trying to figure our the OGA’s mind. You have been doing this unconsciously, it’s time to get deliberate about it and write them out.
I will not speak too much grammar here, but understand it. It’s like writing a book chapter by chapter, where each chapter represents the various operational aspects of the school, detailing the various agents involved in that aspect, their expected behavior and YOUR OWN EXPECTATION OF THEM. What they should do, how they should do it, the challenges they’re likely to have, how they should solve it and finally, the results expected of them.
THE IMPORTANCE OF PROCESSES IN SCHOOL
The need and the advantages of a business process are quite apparent – especially in a school growing large. A process forms the lifeline for any school and helps it streamline individual activities and make sure that resources are put to their optimum use.
KEY REASONS TO HAVE A WELL DEFINED BUSINESS PROCESS IN PLACE
- Identify what tasks are important to your larger business goals
- Streamline them to improve efficiency
- Streamline communication between people/functions/departments to accomplish specific tasks
- Set a hierarchy of approvals wherever relevant in order to ensure accountability and an optimum use of resources
- Keep chaos from creeping into your day-to-day operations
- Standardize a set of procedures to complete tasks that really matter to your busines
THE FOLLOWING ARE SOME SCHOOL PROCESSES YOU NEED TO DEVELOP
- Your Lead generation techniques
- Prospecting MARKETING
- Your Admission process who to admit and who not to admit and how…
- Fees collection
- Your own accounting method (please, have one)
- Staff remuneration Staff development Staff Welfare School Administration
- Curriculum and your own Delivery Style
- Boarding System (if you run one)
- Internal Examinations
- External Examinations
- Events – excursions, parties, competitions, etc
- Interschool relations
- Annexing (if you have)
- External Examinations
- Events – excursions, parties, competitions, etc
- Interschool relations
- Annexing (if you have)
HOW TO CREATE A BUSINESS PROCESS
- Define Your Goals
- Plan and Map Your Process
- Set Actions and Assign Stakeholders
- Test the Process
- Implement the Process
- Monitor the Results
DEFINE YOUR GOALS
What is the purpose of the process? Why was it created? How will you know if it is successful?
To achieve an 80% fee payment compliance status among parents before the 4th week of resumption
PLAN AND MAP OUT YOUR PROCESS
What are the strategies needed to achieve the goals? This is the broad roadmap for the process.
Here’s where our FEE COLLECTION POLICY comes in handy
SET ACTIONS AND ASSIGN STAKEHOLDER
Identify the individual tasks your teams and equipment need to do in order to execute the plan.
Spell out clearly, roles of front desk, admin, driver, teacher etc in this.
TEST THE PROCESS
Run the process on a small scale to see how it performs. Notice any gaps and make adjustments.
For our NEW FEE COLLECTION PROCESS, You may begin trial with a less sensitive segment of the school and not the whole. Then you study the resistances, acceptances and fix them in to the process
IMPLEMENT THE PROCESS
MONITOR THE PROCESS AND IMPROVE IT WITH FEEDBACK
REPEAT THE PROCESS AGAIN AND AGAIN TO PERFECT IT