Management Training for Children?

Monday, November 1st, 2004
Nik Chapapas, posted this question about teaching children how to be productive on his Living Life forum:
Management Training for Children?
As I continue to practice the methods of Getting Things Done, I'm reading of people being successful in teaching their children these methods. I'd love to see my children learning this, but question if I have the right words or practices to teach them.
Nik's question is an appropriate introduction for today's blog entry. I believe that Nik already has what it takes to teach his children, and in fact, he's already doing it.

One of the best ways that I know of to teach a child anything -- good or bad -- is simply to model it. Desirable behavior or not, they will copy what they see. I try to have my children see me in a variety of situations; one of them is dealing with clients. I will often allow one of my children to study or read in my office, just so that they can be with me, see what I do, and observe how I serve clients on the phone or even in a video conference. I never cease to be amazed and what they pick up without my even saying a word to them. It's a great lesson for them, and a good reminder for me.

This weekend, I had to take a brief trip to see a client a few hours away. I knew it would be a casual event, so I decided to invite one of my children to come along as my "helper." This time, it was Emily's turn. We had a great time, the client was friendly and gracious to her, and Emily and I got to spend several hours together in the car, just talking about stuff.

Equally, if not important to the things we discussed, were the things that she observed. I could lecture about principles at length, (been there, done that), but in the end, what is more likely to stick is what she has observed.

Image:Management Training for Children?
All dressed up and ready to go...

I consider myself blessed to be able to make a living doing what I do, and serving the people that I serve. I'm even more delighted to share this blessing with my kids.  If you ever have the opportunity to invite your child to come to work with you, consider doing it. It will be a learning experience for both of you. Whether or not you are able to do this, know that your kids are watching your every move. They know what is real and what is not and they are quite perceptive. Next to knowing that God is watching, I cannot think of anything more humbling.

Discussion/Comments (1):

This is some great insight...

Wow Eric,

This is some great insight, and has given me a number of things to think about. Thanks!

Posted at 11/02/2004 21:26:32 by Nik

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