Khadijah Muhammad, the director of HFP’s Early Head Start program, was recently chosen as a mentor as part of the Leadership and Management Training Institute at the UCLA Anderson School of Management. Led in partnership by the National Center for Program Management and Fiscal Operations (PMFO) and UCLA’s Harold and Pauline Price Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation, the training is specifically designed for new Head Start directors to grow professionally through a mentor-mentee relationship.
Muhammad, an experienced Head Start director, has run HFP’s program for 15 years. She was accepted into the program to be a mentor for two new directors from Michigan and Missouri.
The intensive three-day institute focused on topics such as developing an entrepreneurial mindset, making decisions based on data, staying open to new ideas, how to engage and inspire others, and how to continually learn and grow.
“The institute exposed me to many ideas, concepts and strategies that prepared me to be an effective coach and mentor to the participants I will be mentoring,” said Muhammad. “I love learning and this experience validated me as a leader and has given me a new prospective on organizational behavior and how to be a more effective leader.”
In total 24 mentors and 48 mentees attended the Institute. In addition to attending the Institute in California, they all committed to participating in online learning and building a year-long relationship together as mentor and mentees.
Muhammad hopes this experience will not only benefit her mentees, but also her Early Head Start staff.
“As soon as I returned from the Institute I began implementing some of the concepts here in Philadelphia. For example, I am asking the staff how they want to be appreciated in the workplace, not just by me as their supervisor, but how they want to be appreciated by their peers,” explained Muhammad. “I’ve also implemented a mid-year check in process with my supervisees to discuss their biggest accomplishments so far this year, what they want to accomplish by the end of the year, and what I can do to assist them in their goals.”
This, Muhammad hopes, will integrate some aspects of the mentor-mentee relationship directly to the HFP Early Head Start program and build even more cohesiveness and support into the team.
Visit the Early Head Start program page for more information.