It may have been the case a couple of decades ago that the role of school business manager was an admin position, reserved for carrying out the drip down tasks of those in a higher position of authority. The role has evolved massively and now SBMs are decision making heavy weights, often tasked with the strategic management of schools, academies and trusts.
The SBM role is diverse and ever-changing, the job description hard to define, with some SBMs working at admin level and others at a managerial or board level. The similarity between most business managers is the sheer variety that comes with the job. Dealing with funding, finance, recruitment, policies, facility management and a plethora of other tasks means that half the battle for the SBM is juggling and prioritising.
SBMs can often find themselves struggling to manage their workload, but if there’s anything business managers are good at, it’s collaborating and banding together to support one another. Nowhere is this more apparent than on twitter, where a search of the hashtag #SBLtwitter, is met with an array of business managers tweeting about the various challenges, victories and anecdotes surrounding their job.
Twitter is connecting SBMs across the country through the power of the hashtag. In what is often a solitary role, individuals are finding solidarity with one another, sharing their wisdom and their woes cross country, in a movement that is snowballing across the Twittersphere. Suddenly the SBM role doesn’t seem so solitary after all.
For SBMs, twitter is a platform where individuals can share their ideas and knowledge, discuss best practise and help to lighten the load of their working day. Business managers who are new to the job can reach out and find support from those who have been in the role for years. Reassurance can be sought from people who have struggled the same struggles and seen the light at the other side. Individuals can discover others who work in the same area, arrange visits to other schools and see how they could adjust their working practises for the better.
If you’re a business manager who isn’t already on twitter, it would doubtlessly be beneficial to join. Search for #SBL #SBM and #SBLtwitter and see who’s tweeting today. If you want to be found by other business managers it’s helpful to include hashtags in your tweets, such as the ones in this article. The hashtags will help people locate you if they search for anything SBM related. A mention that you’re a school business manager/leader in your Twitter bio wouldn’t go amiss and whatever you do, don’t forget to tweet your #SBMlunch (yup, there’s a hashtag for that).
Twitter is a vital resource which shouldn’t be overlooked. It’s a very easy social platform to use and is highly regarded amongst businesses and professionals, so you shouldn’t feel like your procrastinating if you’re on it at work (although there are plenty of twitter rabbit holes you can lose yourself down if you do need a distraction- #dogsatpollingstations, here’s looking at you). The SBM network is professional, welcoming and always looking for newcomers to join and contribute. So what are you waiting for? Go and tap into that goldmine.
(If you do decide to join twitter, don’t forget to give us a follow @OroviaEducation.)