Well it is finally here, my last post on the 10 essential qualities of an eLearning coach. I hope you have enjoyed this series and have been able to use the information that I have shared with you. Over the next few weeks, I will be sharing some posts that I have been putting on hold until my ten part series was completed. With that said, lets talk about quality number 10. Quality 10 is that a coach must be prepared and well organized.
Are you prepared and organized for meetings, presentations, and events? Confidence and respect cannot be attained without your leadership of being prepared and consistent. As a teacher, you wouldn't go into your classroom and expect to teach an awesome lesson without a lesson plan. As a coach, you cannot expect to provide great professional development without the same preparation and planning. If you are introducing a program, app, or webtool, then it is crucial that you have some experience using it first. If an account is needed, then you should already have one created. If pictures or videos are used with the tool, then make sure you have those pics and vids stored in a conveniently located folder that can be accessed quickly. You want your demonstration of the tool to go as flawlessly as possible. You do not want it to appear to be difficult to use or your audience will dismiss it. If you, the expert, are struggling with it, then they will automatically assume that it is too arduous for them.
Do you have trouble getting and, or staying organized? If you said, "Yes" you are not alone. Some people were just born with these organizational skills, while most people need training and have to develop these skills. It will take some effort, but once you get organized, you will be more consistent, productive, and confident in your work. You will become a better coach and leader.
Unfortunately, I was not born with great organizational skills. So I can totally relate to you those that need some help. Here is a list of things that I do to help myself stay organized:
- I keep a running to-do list and cross tasks off as they are completed. This does not have to be a list of big things. They can be as simple as a reminder to write a blog post or check out a tool that you want to share out soon.
- Keep an electronic calendar such as Outlook or Google calendar. There are also several good and free calendar apps. Find one that works best for you and use it. Send calendar invites to yourself for meetings and topics you are presenting on each day. Include the times and locations.
- Make reminders on your calendar of upcoming presentations. I will usually put things on my Sunday afternoon calendar with the topics I am presenting for the week. That way, if I feel a little rusty on one, then I have a chance to review it before introducing it to a group of teachers that week.
- Another great thing about the electronic calendar is, if you do not get a task completed on a certain day, you can easily drag or move it to the next time you want to try and tackle it. Don't forget to do this. That way uncompleted tasks do not get left behind and forgotten.
- Lastly, get a good night's rest each night. If you are tired during your work day it will cause you to put things off and then they begin to pile up. Eventually the pile will be so tall, you will become overwhelmed and even less productive because you will be stressed out. So, get that rest and you will have productive and organized days.