Administrators, you have a huge task ahead of you this year, especially even more so during a pandemic. You have been given the task of leading by example for your schools. Work with your staff and assist wherever you’re needed. There will be times when you are ready to pull your hair out or go off on the team. Being a leader is never easy and can be a demanding job. However, as a leader, you have been called to take your schools to the next level.
What does it mean to be a servant leader? I recall working for a charter school, and the principal at that school always told the staff that she was a servant leader. What that meant was she knew when it was time to lead and serve. She knew when to step out of the leadership role and get on the floor with the students. She also knew when to step in to teach a class or two because a teacher was sick or an emergency happened. At times, she would allow her staff to take the lead in staff meetings while she sits and learns. She gave up herself in times of need and never let her role as a principal to be greater than her staff. That is the meaning of a servant leader.
The following are five tips of being a GREAT LEADER:
- Lead By Example. As a leader, you need to show by action and not by words. Some of you may have heard this saying: “Do as I say and not as I Do.” That is not how to lead. If you say something, follow through with your actions.
- Communicate Effectively. Keeping the communication lines open between you and your staff, parents, and students will help break down any misunderstandings. Great leaders know how to be heard and understood, but they learn how to listen. Communication is a two-way street.
- Be Humble. No one wants a leader who is always seeking to be in the spotlight, but a leader who is willing to share the spotlight and is comfortable giving others credit. A school is not run like a one-person island, but it is a team of people who makes the school. You show off on your staff, and your staff will show you off.
- Keep Meetings Productive. If you have an agenda, stick to it. Remember, your staff and you had a long day and would like to go home to their families or personal lives. Give your staff advance notice when you hold staff meetings and the forum’s purpose and how long. Be sure to have a timekeeper to help you and others stay on track. Don’t overload the agenda. Remember, somethings could be said via email.
- Know Your Limit. Be clear about your boundaries and know that it is all right to say no at times. Maintain a balance between your values and the values of the school. It is all right to have limits. This will help eliminate any confusion in knowing where you stand with certain things.
As you begin yet another school year, remember to seek a mentor, continue to improve, and be emotionally aware. A leader that is stagnant and doesn’t grow is not a leader. A leader that doesn’t have a heart and takes time to create a positive working environment is not a true leader. A leader who can’t take constructive criticism will always run into problems that will set the tone for the school year. Learn from other leaders.
Have a Great school year, and be an AMAZING SERVANT LEADER!