A Piece Full World

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"Ten Steps to Some Sanity" for Bullied Educators
Bullied By Your Principal? Start Here.
An Abuse Full World: Kim's Personal Story
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Friday, July 15, 2011

A Happy Post: Effective Leadership
Good Morning all!

Before I introduce you to Captain Effective Leader, I want you to know that I have worked for effective leaders.  I didn't know these men (yes, men- both- for me) were effective until I had a different experience.  Effective leadership, for me, means a simple "thank you, Kim" when I do good work.  Effective leadership, for me, means allowing me to create cool stuff.  My Captain Effective Leaders always, in every instance supported me with words and actions.  Both appreciated my efforts to authentically contribute to our schools.  One supported with a quiet and thoughtful demeanor.  "That's a great idea, Kim. Sounds like extra work.  Ready to take that on?" The other with a blast of energy, confidence and enthusiasm.  "Great!  I love it!  Go for it!"  And I did.  I would. For I am that kind of person.  I do create.  I do participate.  I am enthusiastic. 

Effective leadership.  Now, I know there are many parts.  There are test scores and budgets.  There are meetings and conferences.  There are people to impress!  There are bosses of bosses of bosses who need to see (at least on paper!) that a school leader is doing his job.....at least on paper. And then there are children and parents, teachers and custodians, counselors and bus drivers, cafeteria workers and secretaries.  Listen, I did not know I was working for "Captain Effective Leaders." I just liked them both. I just worked really hard. Without really thinking about it, I knew my work, and even more importantly, that I was appreciated. Man oh man, now I totally understand how good they were!  I have since had ,as you know, a-shall we say?-"contrasting" experience!

Next up-some of my experiences with "Mr. Bully Boss."  THEN-and I promise!- you'll meet Captain Effective Leader.
8:31 am edt          Comments

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Still Serious. Next Up: Meet Mr. Bully Boss and Captain Effective Leader!

I last wrote of courage.  Let me tell you now what stepping up and telling the truth did for me.  It liberated me!  Yes.  Truly, I saw myself at the edge of a cliff--arms spread wide, looking back at  sneers and scowls, suspicion, manipulation.  Bad stuff.  Intimidating stuff.  The kind of stuff that sucks away creativity. Joy really.  And I took the leap.  Didn't know what would happen. Didn't know what was next. Just did it. 

I honestly get, clearly now, how people fold.  How the "you are lucky to have a job" mantra gets to people. How it feels easier- safer somehow -to just do what most others, not all, are doing.  How, once we fold, we are, as a friend in whom I confided said, "in bed with them."  I make no judgements here.  It is crazy hard. 

So, are you like me, simply a person who wants to contribute? Simply a person who has ideas to share?  Simply an imperfect person working hard at doing right things?  It's really not complicated. We need not make it so.

Next up we are going to have some fun!  I will introduce you to two friends of mine--Mr Bully Boss (yes, I claim him as a friend in my liberation!) and Captain Effective Leader. Captain Effective Leaders are out there. They deserve to be celebrated! 

10:38 am edt          Comments

Sunday, July 10, 2011

It Takes Courage

Hey there everyone!  I recently wrote this for "World Pulse".  My pulse is strong!  How about yours?

Mine is a pivotal- happened in a flash, I will not allow you to treat me this way any longer- life altering moment. I know if I had taken what seemed the easy way, the non-confrontational way, the “just do what he says and you will be ok” way, I would have been one of the frightened sycophants on whom my bullying boss, could count to do his dirty work. Still, it was a temptation. Fill in the form, even if it weren’t true! Turn the blind eye! Be done with it! Lie! My mind screamed “just do it!” and yet the words from my mouth were these: “No. I will not do it.”

In the early afternoon of March 16th, 2010, I, a school counselor, stated I would not lie for a man, a school principal, who had bullied me for two years. My consciousness of his bullying grew from head scratching perplexities at his disrespectful arrogance-his disdainful reference, for instance, to me and other women as “honey”- to outright alarm at his “in your face” screaming.

March 16th, 2010. Early afternoon. It was an over the top crazy stressful moment. It was a moment of jaw dropping realization on his part that I truly was not a “team player”: that his coercion of me, as he suspected, would not work. He understood with my simple words, “I will not do it” that I was outside his control. I still see him standing up from his desk. Still see him leaning forward. I still hear him screaming, “JUST DO IT!!” Slow motion. Me-steely inside in that moment, and then alone in my office-crumbling. It was not easy.

It's still not easy. Although I had taken to wearing a button stating “It Takes Courage“ at school (ostensibly for my students!) I did not yet know of my own courage. March 16th, 2010. Apprehension turned to resolve. Fear to conviction. Just six words. A life-mine-altered in that moment.


12:54 pm edt          Comments

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Click here for my district's bullying and harassment policy. You will see I have made comments....