While in the process of filing the kids’ report cards, I scanned a few of the remarks drafted by their teachers. Written about my youngest son, “We really enjoy his humor. It would be helpful if you might speak with him about when it’s not okay to be funny.” This is the same child I envision being a future world leader, not living out of his car and doing stand-up routines in Biloxi.
Parents can be shattered when for the first time they learn that little Johnny or Sally is not the apple of everyone’s eye. As a child, I hated report cards—it seemed to me like tattling. I already knew if I had underperformed, and I did not need or want somebody telling me or my parents.
I am still that way. Criticism stings, no matter what your age. That is why when your significant other asks what you think of her new shoes, if you want to maintain the relationship, there is only one correct answer. Asking how those black pumps differ from the other twenty pairs of black pumps would be a waste of oxygen.
What if we got report cards at work and they were sent home to your children? What if someone watched our performance every day of the year, and four times a year that person issued a report card on our performance? Not simply an annual review over lunch to get a nominal pay boost, but a real report card.
Analysis & Probability Approaching grade level
Understands how to solve problems At a fifth grade level
Works and plays well with others On par with Kim Il-sung
Communication skills He’s no Ronald Regan
Predicts likelihood of events he will never be on the Psychic Hotline
Solves two-digit addition problems Proficient if supplied with a calculator
Identifies problems Usually right after they occur
Writes in complete sentences Proficient with crayons
Just because nobody is issuing a written report card does not mean one is not being compiled. The compilation occurs in the break room, over lunch, and at an informal office gathering.