Have you ever heard the statement “what gets acknowledged gets repeated?” It means that when we focus on a specific action of our students, employees, or even our kids, that action is what they most often do. If all we focus on is what they are doing wrong, that is what they will continue to do. If we harp on them for being late, they will continue to be late. If we are always on them about being on their phone, they will always be on their phone. The truth is, we often catch students doing something wrong more often than we catch them doing things correctly, or at least we mention the wrong more often than we do the right.
What we must learn to do is focus on their successes and point out when they do things right. Every time they do something correct can be a winning moment. So, I challenge you to focus on the positive. Begin to manage your classroom and student salon through MBWA (Manage by Walking Around). Take time to walk through the student salon or classroom and point out what you see them doing correct and be specific. If you see them doing an outstanding needs assessment, mention it to them. If a student is usually late, but today is on time, mention how you appreciate them being on time today.
Make it a habit to reinforce GREAT behavior. The statement is “what gets acknowledge gets repeated.” How about we change it to “what gets PRAISED and ACKNOWLEDGED gets repeated?”
Lisha Barnes is a Cosmetology/Barber Instructor with over 25 years of experience. She started out in a small private school working in Admissions, Financial Aid, Education, and School Director. She was a Director of Education for a chain of Private Cosmetology schools. Currently she serves as the Academic Development Manager for Milady where she supports schools and educators around the nation with continuing education, curriculum development and product knowledge. Lisha has served as an Educator for Milady’s Career Institute; NACCAS Commission; Career Educators of America Committee Member; and has authored numerous writing projects for Milady. This industry experience allows her to see the industry from a variety of viewpoints, which helps in sharing information and ideas with educators all around the world.