As we gently ease out of lockdown, I’m looking forward to spending more time with friends and family, picking up some of my old hobbies, buying some new (or, in my case, charity shop) clothes, getting a haircut and lots more. Still, it’s also crucial to cast our minds back and reflect on our lessons learnt through lockdown. The Solutions team share our lessons learned each week in our team reflection meeting, and if I were to list all of them, we’d be here all day; we have learnt a lot! This reflection is going to be the somewhat big picture.
Whilst we’ve all lived through the same pandemic, the challenges we have faced both professionally and personally have varied significantly. The only way to appreciate these differences is to talk, and we have done a lot of that this year. Our Big Ideas Programme School Partners continue to be under immense pressure; every school is delivering the programme in a bespoke way.
To outline a few of the many challenges:
- Some schools have students stay in the classroom and teachers move around, some it is vice versa.
- Most schools that delivered BOX ran the Big Ideas Day in separate classrooms simultaneously, meaning that significantly more teachers than usual will be involved.
- Some schools use google classroom, some Microsoft teams or other virtual learning spaces.
- Variation in availability and access to IT equipment in student and staff populations
- Variation in availability and access to the internet in student and staff populations either by no access or intermittent access with multiple children and parents on video calls at the same time.
- Variation in knowledge
The list goes on.
Our Business Partners have contended with furlough, massive resourcing challenges, drops in sales, considerable increases in sales, home working, IT and technical difficulties, culture shocks, home-schooling and more.
Despite all of the above, we are surviving personal tragedies, creating and innovating, developing new skills, being grateful for things we previously took for granted, and re-evaluating important things in life.
My top five lessons from lockdown:
- When we must change, we can and do.
- Be open about what’s going on, and don’t be afraid to ask for help.
- We cannot control everything, and with losing control comes an opportunity for growth.
- We must spend much more time understanding the challenges to find the best solutions with lots of listening and questioning.
- Relationships are the bedrock of our work at Solutions for the Planet. We are better together. Together we are awesome.
On writing this, I’ve realised how closely these lessons learned reinforce Solutions for the Planet’s values and by living and breathing our values in all our decisions, actions and everything we have done over the past year, we have proven their worth:
- Responsibility and Sustainability
- Transparency and Integrity
- Creativity and Innovation
- Partnership and Collaboration
I’d love to hear what lockdown lessons you have learnt through lockdown and whether your values have been re-affirmed as ours have been.
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Solutions for the Planet Ltd