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Two Best Management Tips from My Eighth Grade Teacher


Where did you learn your two best management tips? I learned mine from my eighth grade teacher! If we really think about it, most of our important life lessons were taught us before we even reach our teens. A lot of that learning came from our school experiences (good and bad!). Ia��ll bet you have at least one teacher who made a huge impression on you. Mine was Louise K. Taylor.

On the first day of school, Mrs. Taylor established her management style. She would stand up, walk toward this unruly, somewhat disrespectful group of eighth graders and say, a�?Youa��re probably wondering what the a�?Ka�? stands for?a�? Then, after a pregnant pause, she would scream (and I do mean a�?screama��), a�?Killera�?!

Well, that statement sure tamed us, at least for a short period of time. And, it either scared us into performing at our best, or created a few a�?deer in the headlightsa�� thirteen-year olds who literally stayed paralyzed the whole year.

Mrs. Taylora��s Top Management Tips

1. Mrs. Taylor established expectations. When she yelled that first day of school, she made clear, in her a�?opening statementsa��, she wouldna��t tolerate our not doing the work or failing. These were her standards. But, not only was she frightening us into submission. She was also doing something extremely important for successful management: Implicit in those standards was her promise: She could teach us to succeed at a high level in high school and college. All we had to do was to do the work.

Mrs. Taylor motivated us into action and reinforced those actions with encouragement.
She was proved right again and again. Not only did we thrive in high school and college, the basic English and math skills Mrs. Taylor drilled into us in little ole Lebanon, Oregon, have benefited us through the rest of our lives.

2. Mrs. Taylor had a plan of action to get us past those expectations.

Everything Mrs. Taylor did and taught us was backed up with a specific, proven plan of action. She knew how to structure learning, how to get us to practice perfectly, how to give us feedback, and how to help us set ever higher goals. This couldna��t have happened unless she had

A proven plan that she knew got the outcomes she wanted for us
Her obvious faith in her plan gave us the guts, the determination, the motivation to do the work. We knew that she knew that plan got us results.

Are you communicating that with great confidence to agents?

Tough but fair expectations coupled with a proven agent development plan assures high performance.

It was true in grade school and ita��s still true today! Of course, I dona��t mean for you to yell at your agents or threaten them. But, our best performance always happens when we set high standards and then help others reach them.

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