This is TheSchoolHouse302’s monthly #review&reflect, wrapping up our focus on Creativity. Our review and reflect series embraces the powerful sentiment from Soren Kierkegaard: “Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.” Take time with this post as we take a deep dive into our leadership content so that you can develop the skills you need to lead better and grow faster.
Skills I need to develop for improved creativity…
This month we focused on creativity, and we introduced the topic through our low-level leadership series. We truly espouse the notion that finding “bright spots” and “soaring with your strengths” are keys to accessing and duplicating superior leadership qualities. However, there is tremendous value in identifying key behaviors that thwart a desired result as well. We often need to know what not to do first, before we can explore what to do.
We liken our low-level leadership series to that of the great vehicle app, Waze, which informs travelers of all kinds of potential obstacles and issues that lie ahead during a drive. By identifying the three surefire “waze” to crush creativity, we provide leaders a navigational tool to help them avoid common hazards.
Passing judgment, over-prescribing recommendations, and limiting risk-taking are all creativity crushers. An effective leader simply responds differently than using any of these three low-level methods. Rather than passing judgment, she supports her subordinates to gain a greater understanding. Instead of restricting thoughts and controlling situations, she collaborates and creates a space to think. Lastly, she rewards the people who are taking calculated and thoughtful risks to support the core of the vision.
If you find yourself thinking, “well, it really depends on the person,” then we encourage you to dive into the following great reads. Organizational cultures should not be situational, and organizational norms should not fluctuate based on individuals.
Great leaders are avid readers…
Review: In our #readthisseries we featured books that highlight real people who we can emulate and real wisdom for the courage we need to succeed as leaders.
Our first recommendation is, Steal like an artist: 10 things nobody told you about being creative.. This is a quick read that we feel sparks creativity.
Our second recommendation is from Eric Sheninger and Trish Rubin, BrandED: Tell your story, build relationships, and empower learning. This is a terrific book for school leaders looking to brand their school or district and truly bring their story to life. It offers practical yet creative advice.
Our final recommendation comes from Sir Ken Robinson, Creative schools: Revolutionizing education from the ground up. The bottom line is that Ken’s message challenges us as educators. Only read this book if you are serious about change, creativity, and alternative to the current system of schooling.
You can’t miss our #readthisseries on 3 books you need to read now.
Who should I follow…
What does an expert have to say about creativity? If you want to dig even deeper into the mind of a creative thinker, you’ll want to listen to our #onethingseries this month, which featured creativity expert and author of Steal Like an Artist, Austin Kleon. One simple but magical act you can do each day, according to Austin, is to take a walk. We champion this sentiment because it encourages the need to find our center, to find “me” time, to enjoy nature, and to open the mind to creative thought.
Action: This month we asked you challenge yourself through TPA: A Framework for Growth Through Reflection
To learn more about supporting the people you lead, complete this #ThreeMinuteChallenge.
To become more collaborative, complete this #ThreeMinuteChallenge.
To become better at rewarding risk-taking, complete this #ThreeMinuteChallenge. Please subscribe! Listen to the entire podcast on iTunes, One Thing Series, and please rate and like (it helps). That’s our #review&reflect for Creativity. Take a look back to take a step forward. TheSchoolHouse302 is about getting to simple and maximizing effective research-based strategies that empower individuals to lead better and grow faster. Please let us know how our leadership posts are working for you, what you are reading to improve yourself, and your thoughts on leadership and growth here on our blog and Twitter. Follow our #onethingseries podcast on iTunes and our #readthisseries on YouTube. Joe & T.J.