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Showing posts from November, 2016

Focus: The Essential Leadership Mindset

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We're in the midst of the holiday season and one thing is for sure...every store out there is vying for your attention. It's difficult to focus on your list. All the stores have really cool stuff for really great prices. Focusing is a skill that is hard to develop when the distractions look so great!

The same is true in school leadership and school improvement. Every school out there seems to be doing something great. Every publisher has great ideas to improve student learning. Every leader is making an impact in their world of influence.

Your superintendent is offering ideas. Your peers are talking about ideas. Your teachers are innovating new initiatives. Your school improvement plan is growing and mounding. But where's the focus?

School Improvement Without Focus You know the campus improvement plan. It's thick and no one ever looks at it.

You may have started strategic planning in lieu of the traditional campus plan. That's great!

Regardless of your planning st…

Candor in Crucial Conversations

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Assumptions are the short-cuts to random results in relationships. Sometimes they work, sometimes they fail. Candor is the direct path to results in crucial conversations. Candor produces clear communication and understanding in relationships.

If you believe in your relationships, you can afford candor. If your relationships are superficial, candor may just be what is needed. Conversations just aren't at optimum quality without it.

This is a follow-up to our previous post How to Navigate Crucial Conversations.

What is Candor and Why do School Leaders need it? Consider the following potential conflicts:
Someone didn't complete a task. A teacher didn't fulfill your expectation. A parent is suddenly upset and calls the school board. Your leadership team is quieter than normal at your three previous meetings.Your assistant superintendent seems to have stopped visiting your campus, and you're not sure why.  The worst response is to make an assumption. You might assume you s…

Navigating those Crucial Conversations

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There's that nagging friction deep inside that let's you know that you need to have a conversation with someone. You've put it off for days, maybe even weeks because you know it will be a difficult conversation. But you also know it is a crucial conversation to have.

Can you think of it? That person and conversation? Okay. Let's look at 4 strategies that will help you.

Also, here's more on "Candor in Crucial Conversations"
First, there are plenty of resources on holding difficult, crucial, challenging, and complex conversations. The books and articles are out there because we all recognize the cost. The cost of not holding the conversation is greater than the potential conflict that could occur in the discussion.

There are mindsets, approaches, and ideas for minimizing any conflict that could occur from a tough talk. But, does it really have to be a tough talk?

Conversation Can Create a Win-Win Usually there's a problem, perceived behavior, or possibl…

Lead with Intent, Be Transformational

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Principals, you have so many management tasks to do every day - on-site meetings, communication, data-monitoring, conflict resolution, off-site meetings, fundraisers, etc... With the right mindsets and intentional strategies, each of these tasks can be more than a management role. Every interaction is an opportunity for transformational leadership.

Here are three lessons shared in the past few weeks from thought leaders on twitter.
You Will Be Wrong Embrace the fact that if you are going to lead people to grow, you are going to be wrong. It's ok #txeduchat — Aaron Hogan (@aaron_hogan) October 8, 2016  It's okay. No, it's preferred. No one likes perfection. Even worse, no one likes someone who pretends to be perfect.

The emotional intelligence lesson for leaders is, be intentionally vulnerable. Vulnerable people are likeable. They are easier to follow. They are human.

If you want to lead, be open about being wrong. Be easy to follow.

Do You Lead with Checklists?#edleadersh…