David Wright, Early Years Director, Paint Pots Nurseries, Southampton
In this highly reflective, practical and personal guide, Debbie reminds us of what it means to be human - physiologically and emotionally - and makes a compelling case for early years management focused on empathy, support, dialogue and encouragement. An essential read for those seeking the best performance from their team.
Helen Gration, Founder, Yorkshire Montessori Nursery
With this book, Debbie proves once again that she is the authority on how to lead a team to outstanding performance in all areas of the demanding and professional work of early childhood care and education. In an era where professional advice and training has reduced from the traditional sources, managers and leaders will find this guide particularly useful. As a 'go to' specialist, Debbie supports the leader through the challenging matters of performance management and how this one area can benefit the employee, employer and child. The reader will learn how the holistic approach to supporting each team member will provide a respectful, positive environment where anything less is intolerable. As an owner of children's nurseries, I particularly appreciate how Debbie Garvey makes her advice relevant as well as practical to the demands of this field of work in the now.
Helen Connelly, Area Manager & Montessori Teacher, Yorkshire Montessori Nursery
What an excellent and informative book Debbie Garvey has produced. It will be a constant source of reference and inspiration for both those new to management and those with a little more experience in the role. This book provides wonderful CPD for the reader and offers them a thorough approach to supporting staff in the continuing development of their skill base whilst strengthening their own abilities. I totally agree with her reasoning that whilst we respect, support and celebrate the individualism of our children our staff are sometimes sadly overlooked. Debbie's inclusion of the Reflective Practice pieces and scenarios really do help the reader to formulate appropriate plans for best practice with which to support our much valued workforce, central to any good nursery. All chapters are set out in a logical and easy to read format and through its application I believe management will have the skills to support staff so they can become the highly skilled and passionate carers they really want to be. There are many excellent topics raised in the book but I was pleased to note the reference to staff stress within the workplace and the inclusion of well-being and mindfulness as a means of easing their load and promoting the importance of the caring employer.
Jonathan Wainwright, Principal Lecturer, Department of Education Childhood and Inclusion, Sheffield Hallam University
I was delighted when asked to review Debbie Garvey's book, particularly since I had been invited to write the introduction to her first book - Leadership for Quality in Early Years and Playwork. This latest book is a fascinating guide for setting leaders and challenges them to reflect, sometimes deeply, on their approach to performance management. It takes readers on a journey of discovery, exploring the 'hows' and 'whys' of performance management. It starts with an account of the neuroscience of behaviour and leads to a very useful selection of tools and techniques for leaders to use. Debbie's style is fascinating. Despite her claims not to be an academic, the work is well supported by research. What makes it so readable, however, are the very personal anecdotes which give us, as readers, the chance to engage in her world - a world which is well informed, insightful and illustrates her own dilemmas and how they are being resolved. I heartily recommend this book to all setting leaders, as well as others who are interested in leadership in the early years sector, or indeed in a fascinating narrative.