Daniella Lang is the Headteacher at Brimsdown Primary School in Enfield, in this series of 8 posts she will be sharing her insights on how to support the school community remotely.
I am sure many of you are familiar with Maslow. His hierarchy of needs is a motivational theory in psychology consisting of a five-tier model of human needs, often shown as a pyramid. The higher levels represent more complex needs including self-actualisation. The need to have respect given to you and to others falls in the tier below this, meaning that Maslow believed that without respect a person can never reach their full potential. I feel this is true and links to our well-being as we as people have an innate need to connect with others. We spend a great deal of our day at work and so it plays an important part in this.
When we respect ourselves and others, we feel more open to taking risks and opportunities and this can benefit us and our schools. This mutual respect and trust between staff help build positive working relationships and ensure that there is a culture of shared responsibility, as well as openness and honesty. These are all key to supporting staff wellbeing as they are empowering for staff.
Trust in leaders’ interactions and that staff can express themselves, their values, ideas, and emotions, without fear of reprisal is important in designing a workplace where collaboration and interactions are valued. This means when times are tough, as they are now, staff pull together and support each other.