Many of my dear writer friends post blogs about rejection. Not being a writer, I haven't put much effort into empathetic reading. I follow the posts with interest and tsk, tsk in sympathy, but have never tried to wrap my head around what it would feel like to put your work - a portion of yourself out there and have it rejected. For that I humbly apologize. This morning I had the proverbial Oprah aha moment.
At this late point in my career I would like to move to a more broad based leadership role. I've applied to several school districts and for all my efforts the response has been a series of thin rejection letters. The old 'thanks, but no thanks'. Each new rejection, has plunged me to new level of resiliency. Resiliency - my old friend - it's good to talk to you again.
Another week... one more application, one more possibility.
Here's a peek at my 'Philosophy of Leadership'. My dear reverend read it and said he'd hire me. What more could a girl ask for?
Here's what I believe; in one page or less.
"And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom."
by Anais Nin
Our schools are filled with students who do the miraculous on a daily basis. They learn to read, to write, to compute, and when there is opportunity and safety, they create. Our role as educators is to guide them, challenge them, help them stare down the risk and choose to bloom. What an honour it is to be permitted; called upon, to create the safe environment that will facilitate their growth; academically, socially and in humanness. My experience has taught me that when a fair and mutually respectful relationship has been established, students will respond. The same holds true for the teacher/administrator relationship. Where a school based administrator has the trust and respect of their teachers, then team work can begin. I appreciate what Howard Schultz (the founder of Starbucks) says about team.
"Remember: You'll be left with an empty feeling if you hit the finish line alone.When you run a race as a team, though, you'll discover that much of the reward comes from hitting the tape together. You want to be surrounded not just by cheering onlookers but by a crowd of winners, celebrating as one."
So the question emerges, how do we lead? How do we inspire and build a team? Most simply put, team comes out of building relationships. It’s about getting out of the way and letting people do what they do best; it’s knowing when to push and when to pull back. My philosophy of leadership is laid upon a foundation of integrity and is built through relationship. A successful leader will model: a strong, albeit balanced work ethic, ongoing professional development, moral integrity, trust, and a deep commitment to creating a safe and nurturing learning environment for students. A capable leader guides the development and implementation of shared values, vision, mission, and goals to support learning and achievement for all students as well as practicing shared leadership and promoting it in others. In addition a school administrator would build positive and effective interdependencies between schools, families and the community.
In summary, the key component of leadership is a commitment to guide and develop the best climate possible for all staff, students and parents; a climate of growth, enthusiasm, safety, and possibility. The reward will be the delight of all parties as they move forward individually, and as a team in becoming the best they can be.
“Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from here and make a brand new ending.” -- Anonymous
Enjoy your weekend!