Monday, November 23, 2009

Trying to Lead

3D Team Leadership Arrow ConceptImage by lumaxart via Flickr

Wikipedia defines "Leadership" as a process of influence in which a person enlists the support and aid of others to accomplish a common task. What if those people who are enlisted to support and aid aren't helping to accomplish the task? What if they are working on a different task all together? How does the leader regroup and pull the collective personnel together for the benefit of the organization?

These are all challenges every leader, inside and outside of K-12, faces on a daily basis. The great leaders find a way to rise above the negativity, doubt and naysayers, while maintaining a positive approach and smiling face. The great leaders don't turn their backs on those who have already turned their backs on the leader, instead they accept the challenge of selling their product, themselves and their vision for the organization to those people again.

What challenges does your organization face? Do these sound familiar? Education is not exempt from the challenges that face the business world. We are restricted sometimes in how we deal with situations, being a public employee, but I think that makes a better leader. Rather than taking the easy way out and simply cutting the employee loose, it can be used as a learning experience on both ends to enhance the skill set of the leader and the eventual leader.

Finally, what is my personal philosophy on leadership? I believe all great leaders have the following characteristics:
  • They have surrounded themselves with talent, future leaders and visionaries.
  • They allow others to submit ideas, share the vision and shape the future.
  • They are always looking to push those around them, past them. A great leader produces more great leaders.
  • They offer solutions that the entire organization can understand and support.
Life would be too simple without obstacles and challenges. Embrace them - do not turn from them.

JDS | CIO


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