Manager v. Consultant
After writing College Success Guaranteed (CSG-5), many parents have asked me for tips on how they might optimize their son or daughter’s college experience. Furthermore, during my talks with high school seniors, I began to notice more and more parents in the audience. Hence, I formulated 5 rules for parents and proceeded to weave them into my talks.
After one of my talks, my father, an active educator with over 60 years of experience working with students and families, observed that just about all of my “parent rules” seemed focused on parents’ need to “let go” of their children. I agree. If the most important priority for students is to go to class, then the most important priority for parents is to step aside.
Years ago, I heard parent/family expert Michael Riera describe what he called the “manager vs. consultant” dynamic relative to parenting. If you are a parent sending a child off to college, consider the idea that you have been your child’s primary manager for 18 years. When you drop your child off at college, it’s time to assume a new role. So, make sure that you have been fired… as manager. (And if your child hasn’t fired you, then promptly resign.) As sad and difficult as this may be, know that if you play your cards right, you will eventually be re-hired as a consultant. And being a consultant has it all over being a manager. Best of all, it frees you up to start thinking about how get back to focusing on your own life!
Next: The 5 Rules for Parents
Onward, Malcolm Gauld