The one thing you need to fix this year

Who, not what, is the issue you need to fix this year?


I ask because I regularly hear this phrase from school leaders: 


“It’s been brilliant this week in school because ‘X’ has been off sick/on leave”.


I imagine you’re instantly picturing someone who makes you feel the same way.


  • Maybe it’s your site manager.
  • Maybe it’s a TA.
  • A teacher perhaps.


Whoever it is, make this year the year you fix the issue they’re causing. 



Too often we don’t.

And then one day, years later, that person leaves.

And the difference is palpable!


The mood across the school improves (and quite often so does performance).



But why didn’t we fix this years ago?

Why did we live with it? 

And why did we let our teams live with it?

What impact did it have on your children’s education?

Because it became a norm that you didn’t question.


I know these kinds of conversations aren’t nice.

I know recruitment is challenging.

And I know fixing these behavioural issues is hard.


But the flip side of not fixing them is like living with a chronic ailment.

Don’t ignore it.

Don’t hope it’ll fix itself.

Don’t expect that it’ll go away of its own accord.

Don’t accept it as normal.


Do pick the one issue that needs to be fixed and resolve to fix it kindly and effectively.

Hopefully they will improve and become a superstar (it does happen).

And if it ends up meaning you need to recruit someone new, that’s a better problem to have.


Email me about it if you want to.


Best wishes,



P.s. And if you want to learn how to know how to navigate the legal aspects of tackling under-performance, then join me and our super legal eagle at our ‘Capability Conference: kindly and effectively tackling under-performance’ on 14th March, 2024.


Spotlight Resource

Here’s a video about five difficult conversations that exist in almost every school: