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Learning From Life

Viewed 2183 times 2017-5-12 08:59 |System category:Life| experience, situation, interest, because, classes

Every situation that you encounter, will teach you valuable lessons about life. You need to observe situations and not just experience them. You need to rationally reflect upon them.

Last night, we had a meeting with 5 parents who had shown interest in our classes. We set the time to meet at 6 p.m. All of them except one, were on time. The late parent called 7 times. We didn't answer because we didn't want to disrupt the meeting.

I gave a short, informal presentation of our classes. I talked about what we do, how we do it and the results we've experienced so far. We have refined a method and style of teaching English that has landed one student in Harvard University, one student at Princeton University, one at Johns Hopkins University and several others at top 100 universities and colleges in America and Canada. Our classes get results. Our teaching is highly effective. We are confident that is the best that they can get in our province.

Near the end of the meeting, the late parent showed up. He came in with an attitude that was obvious. He had heard none of the meeting, but came in as if he was in charge of the meeting. We have these meetings precisely to test the parents and see who we can work with and who we don't want to work with. We choose parents and not students. If we get the right parents, we'll get the right students.

The late parent was negative, critical, rude, contradictory and demanding. This is exactly the behavior we want to avoid. We won't take students whose parents act like this guy. This is why we have the meeting. The parents don't know it, but, they are being tested.

The late, negative, rude parent seemed to influence some of the others negatively. They turned negative and argumentative even though there was absolutely nothing to argue about. If a parent doesn't like or want our way of teaching their child, then, we need to know that from the outset. We will save them a lot of time and money while saving ourselves a lot of aggravation in the future.

Just before I went to bed, I made a list of what we learned from the meeting. Self observation and reflection is perfect for assessing and further defining what we want and what we don't want.

 1. Let the parent know that if they are late, don't bother coming at all. We won't let them join the meeting late. If they are a parent and can't get there on time, then, they aren't likely to be able to get their children to class on time. We don't want them.

 2. If they talk over others, interrupt, have a negative attitude, then, we don't want them. They need to go find another place who will take their child and teach them English. We won't.

 3. We schedule the class at our convenience. We are busy with a lot of classes. We work hard. We set the schedule and class time. If they can make it, fine. If not, that's fine too. 

4. The first sign of someone trying to get us to move the scheduled time to accommodate them is a sign that we don’t want them. They are completely oblivious to the needs of others and assume that the class is only for them. We don’t want that kind of person.

 5. If they talk over us in OUR meeting, they are disrespectful. It is a sign that we don't want them. If they are negative and try to influence others negatively, we don't want them. They will be trouble in the future.

My point in this blog is this. Learn from life. Rationally assess and evaluate situations. Do it calmly and without a lot of emotion. Don't let even a negative situation pass you by without learning from it. This how you build quality into everything you do in life. It is definitely our goal to select the right students because we know that, when we do, we give the best we have to give and get the results that we want to get.

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)




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Michael is the author of the transformational book, Powerful Attitudes. He is a professional educator, an educational consultant, an author. He lives in Zhengzhou, Henan Province. He enjoys playing guitar and writing poetry. He loves China.


Recent comments

  • Encouraging Trends in Chinese Education 2018-6-26 15:08

    Well done Michael! you are still rocking here!

  • Brilliant Chinese Parents 2018-6-21 14:40

    parcher: i was asked to teach my collegues daughter english, because her teacher was doing such a poor job (his words ) i tried to put him straight that rome w ...
    You are wise.

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