Photo Credit: Jeff Widener, Associated Press

Years ago, my sister taught a Sunday School class of 5-year old boys. At 11 p.m. one Saturday she suddenly remembered that she had a schedule conflict and needed me to teach her class. I got up early the next morning to study the lesson and to cut out and color smiley faces. As the time for church neared, I gathered all my materials and headed for the door. I suddenly remembered that my sister had told me to take them a snack, but a quick glance at the clock told me I was out of time. If I did not leave then, I would be late for church.

About halfway through the hour-long lesson Daniel suddenly became concerned. He looked and sounded like a little man dressed in his navy-blue business suit with white shirt and tie, “Do you have a snack for us?”

“No, Daniel, I ran out of time while preparing the lesson. I am sorry. There will not be a snack today.”

Daniel folded his arms and crossed one leg over the other. He gave me a look of stern disapproval and in an even, authoritarian tone stated, “Our teacher ALWAYS has a snack for us.”

“Daniel, I am sorry, but I do not have a snack. I did not have time.”

Daniel looked at me like a boss who was not going to accept excuses. “You are not a very good teacher.” Another little boy sounding very much like “a little boy” said, “Yeah, you’re not a very good teacher.”

And in that moment, I knew that Daniel had taught me a very important lesson.[i] I thought to be a good teacher I needed to know my lesson and color and cut out smiley faces, but Daniel knew that the most important key to being a good teacher was to bring snacks, and if Daniel was my boss, and I did not bring snacks, I was not going to get a good performance review. Read Full Article.

Author: Coley Duncan

Experienced Medical Director with a passion for creating a culture of positivity and accountability to transform organizational culture. Demonstrated history of leading physicians to create cohesiveness in a department to align with the mission and vision of the organization. Highlights -- Patient Safety & Quality Improvement: Under my leadership, zero malpractice cases in 3+ years for a 27 FTE hospitalist program. -- Facilitating Culture of Change: Through culture change, transformed the hospitalist program from the hospital’s biggest problem to its greatest strength. -- Cost Savings: When the hospitalist program was understaffed, built a culture of engagement & alignment that achieved close to zero premium labor costs.