Earlier this month was Teacher Appreciation Week. You might have seen some hashtags with #ThankATeacher on Facebook and Twitter. At least, I hope you did. Education professionals, like teachers, play an important role in our personal and professional lives. Many of today’s teachers go far above and beyond the job description to make sure that students get a good education along with the tools they need to learn.
But like so many “established days of recognition and appreciation”, we should support and thank teachers all year long. That doesn’t mean I’m anti- Thank a Teacher Day. Quite the contrary, I’m all for it. I would just like to see us do it more often.
In addition, I’d like to see us recognize all of the informal teaching that happens every day as well. Let’s not take anything away from education professionals. However, since HR Bartender is a workplace blog, I’d love to talk about all the teaching that takes place inside organizations.
Every day, we learn from buddies, mentors, supervisors, managers, etc. Employees learn company rules and policies. Coworkers teach and employees learn how to complete tasks and improve skills. Supervisors and managers at every level of the organization teach employees the right and wrong way to do things through their actions.
Often becoming a good “workplace teacher” comes from our early years and school teachers. Some of us are very fortunate to have teachers with passion and patience. We have family members who challenge us to study hard and teach us the value of that effort. And regardless of where you went to school and how much school you’ve completed, teachers can help us develop a natural curiosity and desire to learn.
While I’m a little late with my blog post for Teacher Appreciation Week, my gratitude happens regularly. My teachers have helped me become the person I am today. And hopefully, the skills they’ve taught me allow me to pay it forward so others can learn. I can’t help but think that’s the greatest compliment you can give a teacher. Be a good learner so someday, whether it’s in a school classroom or a corporate training room, you can be a good teacher to others.12