Is it too soon to say “I made it”?

This time last year, in June 2019, I had just interviewed for my dream job. It was that role that ticked all the boxes for me and I wanted it really badly. Of course, when I got the call saying I’d been successful I was over the moon and did a dance of joy (which confused my then 6 year old daughter). To say I was happy was an understatement. Several of my twitter buddies had been on the journey with me and given me plenty of encouragement along the way (@accidentalSBM, @ruralSBm, @SpecialSBM and @SBMCoventry being the main ones).

September 2nd 2019 came and went and I started the role of School Business, Finance and Operations Director. Fast forward to today and we’re three weeks shy of the end of term. I find myself wondering “is it too soon to say I’ve made it?” I don’t want to tempt fate but I’m chuffed to have made it through a full academic year, especially with all the trials that it has thrown up.

I can say with certainty that nobody expected the 2019 academic year to play out the way it has and I certainly didn’t picture my first year in the secondary phase to map out the way it has. We are never completely prepared for what lies ahead but it’s been an amazing experience. It’s called for a level head and a pragmatic approach. If you’re lucky enough to have a Leadership Team like mine you will have faced the Coronavirus crisis as a team and not felt weighed down with massive decisions to make and known that your voice is heard and valued as a leader.

This time almost two years ago I wrote a blog (Looking backwards then racing forwards) about how energised I was and how I was raring to go with my planning for the new school year. It was a “penny drop” moment for me. I’d matured as an SBL and had great plans mapped out, all linked to my school’s development plan. I knew just how I was going to take my team on a journey. I’m not quite there yet in my current role but I know I will get there. My primary experience is invaluable and puts me in a great position but I know there’s a lot to learn. I’m committed to staying at my school for a long time to come so I’m taking my time to hone my craft and get it right. As I’ve said before, my aim is to be the most awesome Business Leader that I can be.

So as I limp through the last three weeks with my eyes firmly fixed on the last day of term I’m giving myself a virtual pat on the back. A year ago I had to be talked into attending the interview because I didn’t believe I could do the job. Now I’m overjoyed that yes, I made it through my first year. Bring on the next challenge!

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