Tuesday, August 24, 2010

New Perspectives….

I spend a lot of time reading, and honestly I really love it. However I have a confession; up until last Sunday, I had never purchased – therefore never read- the New York Times Sunday paper. But after about the 50th person referenced an article with the phrase, “Did you see the Times this week?” I decided I needed to. You see, being a good Boston boy I, of course, have always been partial to the hometown Globe, and had the impression that the Times was really simply New York’s version of our local paper. I mean, did I really want to read about the goings on in Queens, or an opening of an art exhibit in Manhattan? Or even worse be forced to read a complimentary article about the dreaded Yankees; which to me is a fate worse than death…

I’ll admit it, right here, right now; I was wrong. The New York Times Sunday Edition is really (despite what USA Today would say) the nation’s newspaper. Of course there is a New York slant, but I found myself reading article after article which had a global or national angle, and was amazed at both the depth and breadth of the paper.

Now this blog isn’t about you reading the Times (although I think you should buy it at least once) it’s about gaining a new perspective.

As an Educational Consultants I need to make sure that I am as up to date on the inner workings of residential programs as I can be, and I can’t rely on hearsay, conjecture and my own, sometimes dated, information. I need to make sure that I have the most accurate and up to date information available so that when I make a recommendation to a family, I feel confident that I’ve done all I can to present an accurate picture of what the program is and isn’t. I can get that information from a variety of sources; colleagues, clients, websites, staff, really anyone who has a connection. I read pro school sites, and the sites which want to shut down many of the schools I refer to, I read blogs and newsletters. Sometimes I read professional journals and realize that there are many people out there who are much smarter than me. Sure a lot of what I get will be biased (like some of the articles in the Times) but if I spread my sources out I will get an impartial and fair assessment of the programs I refer to. I don’t always agree with what I read, but I am always opening myself up to new ideas and perspectives, and I feel that is crucial to being effective at what I do.

So go ahead, read the Times; just stay away from the sports section if you’re a Boston fan….