Senior primary leader’s lab St Mark’s Mt Barker
Last Thursday leaders from Lutheran primary schools explored their thinking about Leadership: Is an effective leader a hero or a host?
In the past we have assumed certain things about leaders:
- Leaders have the answers. They know what to do.
- People do what they’re told. They just have to be given good plans and instructions.
- High risk requires high control.
Today our challenges are complex and interrelated requiring leaders who are not so much ‘heroes’ but ‘hosts’.
- provide conditions and good group processes for people to work together.
- provide resources of time, the scarcest commodity of all.
- insist that people and the system learn from experience, frequently.
- offer unequivocal support—people know the leader is there for them.
- keep the bureaucracy at bay, creating oases where people are less encumbered by senseless demands for administrivia.
- play defense with other leaders who want to take back control.
- reflect back to people on a regular basis how they’re doing, what they’re accomplishing, how far they’ve journeyed.
- work with people to develop relevant measures of progress to make their achievements visible.
- value conviviality and esprit de corps— not false rah rah activities, but the spirit that arises in any group that accomplishes difficult work together.
Reference “Leadership in the Age of Complexity: From Hero to Host” Margaret Wheatley with Debbie Frieze ©2010
The group engaged in various practices such as journaling and dialogue walks to deepen their understanding and to identify relevance to context, connections to Growing deep capabilities and steps towards action.
Educational Leadership Director