Marietta loves her job. She is an enthusiastic and dynamic Director for a very successful child care program. Her colleagues, the staff and the families in the center consider her to be an exceptional leader. Each year, she devotes hundreds of hours per year to providing mentorship and professional guidance to staff members and peers. Despite her obvious leadership skills, Marietta often feels isolated and unsure about how to accomplish difficult changes. Her wavering confidence cause her to struggle to manage board meetings and communications with vendors and community businesses. Marietta needs support and guidance that staff members, friends, and family can’t provide. She needs a professional mentor.
When was the last time you reached our to support a colleague or encourage an emerging leader? When was the last time someone reached out to inspire you? We think it happens far too infrequently. In fact, we wonder if there sometimes there is a little bit of the “mean girls” (mean people) phenomenon in our field. Is it possible that early childhood leaders are often so focused on the quality of our programs, and the children and families we serve, that we forget to get the support we need to grow? Are we so busy we don’t have the psychic energy and compassion to “pay it forward” to other aspiring educators and leaders? And, secretly, sometimes, do we professionally undermine our colleagues and peers? Fess up. It’s time to reflect. It happens in every profession. Just because we are considered to be “nurturing people” by virtue of the fact that we work in early childhood doesn’t mean we are immune to human nature to be professionally envious and mean-spirited. Time to make some changes?
Marietta’s story is just one example of a challenge early childhood leaders often experience. Knowing first-hand how isolated even the most extroverted Director can be, we set out to offer a free webinar that will help others explore the meaning of mentorship — how to provide it, and how to get it.
After more than a year of pursuing her as a speaker for Early Childhood Investigations Webinars, we’re finally lucky enough to have landed Kathy Korman Frey as the presenter for our mentorship session on May 23, 2012 at 2 PM. Kathy is a charismatic and motivating speaker who founded The Hot Momma’s Project® and inspired us to pursue mentorship training and bring her her “Guerrilla Mentoring” method to early childhood educators through our webinar series in this fascinating session, Guerrilla Mentoring for ECE Staff – The Goldmine of Self-Sustaining Mentoring Practices.