Adapt, Adjust, Overcome: 10 Stories About Leaders Who Constantly Learn To Be Better with Michael Useem

Adapt, Adjust, Overcome: 10 Stories About Leaders Who Constantly Learn To Be Better with Michael Useem

About Michael Useem

Michael Useem is Professor of Management and Faculty Director of the Center for Leadership and Change Management and McNulty Leadership Program at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.  His university teaching includes MBA and executive-MBA courses on management and leadership, and he offers programs on leadership and governance for managers in the United States, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. 

He works on leadership development with many companies and organizations in the private, public and non-profit sectors.  He is the author of The Leader’s Checklist, The Leadership Moment, Executive Defense, Investor Capitalism, Leading Up, and The Go Point.  

He is also co-author and co-editor of Learning from Catastrophes; co-author of The India Way, Leadership Dispatches, Boards That Lead, and The Strategic Leader’s Roadmap, Fortune Makers: The Leaders Creating China’s Great Global Companies (2017), Go Long: Why Long-Term Thinking Is Your Best Short-Term Strategy (2018), and Mastering Catastrophic Risk: How Companies Are Coping with Disruption (2018). His latest book, The Edge, is what we will be digging into today. 

Mike is co-anchor for a weekly program “Leadership in Action” on SiriusXM Radio Channel 132, Business Radio Powered by the Wharton School.

What You’ll Find In This Episode with Michael Useem 

Michael pours his wealth of knowledge into this transformative episode on how leaders continually learn to ensure that they rise to meet the demands of the job. Leaders know that the job description is about the only thing regarding the position that fits nicely onto a sheet of paper. Many roles evolve as demands emerge and arise from multiple avenues. 

Michael pointed out the irony in the subtitle of The Edge, which is about CEOs learning to lead. He acknowledged that we might assume that CEOs know how to lead, but that’s not always true.They need to learn how to lead provided the circumstances they find themselves within.

 

Michael talked about the fact that for many leaders, what got you here won’t get you there. Although not mentioned in the show, check out Marshall Goldsmith’s book, What Got You Here, Won’t Get You There, which we love.

 

Don’t miss what Michael says about Mark Turner and his learning tour. 

Michael says that leaders need to recognize their responsibility in leading the people they serve. This is what brings them to a point of wanting to learn more about learning to lead. 

Three avenues for committing to learning to be the leader who you want to be:

  1. You need to make your life  a classroom. We can all learn from leaders in history. Read it, watch it. Just learn it.
  2. Gather around yourself really great mentors and coaches, even if it’s informal. 
  3. Get out of your office and start doing it. 

You have to hear why Michael takes students to Antarctica and the Marine Corp.

Michael mentioned Herminia Ibarra’s book on reinventing identity.  Check it out.

Michael says that the single most important thing that a leader can do to grow is to get out of their comfort zone. 

Dr. Useem follows many sources for leadership, but often comes back to the Chief Executive of Progressive Insurance, Tricia Griffith. Learn about how she redefines what it means to be the Big Boss.

Michael talked about looking at leadership as 360 but in reverse. We ought to think about leading our peers and the people above us, not just our subordinates. 

Don’t miss what he says about having more impact. Oh, and yeah, wishing he could climb Mt. Everest.

Michael talked about learning to lead by seeing others do it poorly. There’s a lot to learn from setbacks and catastrophes. Don’t miss how he describes the CEO of Tyco.

Joe was reminded about leading to grow and thrive versus just to get by. 

Michael liked our last question and recalls asking CEOs what they find to be true that they didn’t realize before.  

Lastly, Michael reminds us that leadership never really comes down to one thing, but a mission critical checklist. 

As always, let us know what you think of this with a like, a follow, or a comment. Find us on Twitter, YouTube, iTunes, Facebook, & SoundCloud. And, again, if you want one simple model for leading better and growing faster per month, follow this blog by entering your email at the top right of the screen.

 

TheSchoolHouse302 is about getting to simple by maximizing effective research-based strategies that empower individuals to lead better and grow faster.

 

Joe & T.J. 

This episode was brought to you by GhostBed, a family-owned business of sleep experts with 20+ years of experience. With 30K+ 5-star reviews, you can’t go wrong with GhostBed. Their mattresses are handcrafted, and they come with a 101-night-at-home-sleep trial. For a limited time, you can get 30% by using our code — SH302 — at checkout. And, even if you tell someone about GhostBed, you can earn a $100 referral reward. Go to Ghostbed.com today and use SH302 at checkout. 

2 Practical Strategies To Dramatically Improve Your Value-Driven Goals (and more) with Richard Shell

2 Practical Strategies To Dramatically Improve Your Value-Driven Goals (and more) with Richard Shell

Richard is an award-winning scholar, teacher, and author at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. In his work, he helps students and executives reach peak levels of personal and professional effectiveness through skilled negotiation, persuasion, influence, and the discovery of meaningful life goals. Three beliefs permeate everything that he teaches and writes. First, success begins with self-awareness. Second, success progresses through excellence in practice. Third, as he shows in his latest book, The Conscience Code, success demands a lifelong commitment to the highest standards of integrity.

Richard teaches a course in “ethics and responsibility” where students share stories about navigating value-challenges, in other words, the times that we are compelled to do things in life that don’t align with our sense of integrity. Throughout this interview, Richard calls on individuals to have courage and face those tough issues that surface from time-to-time. 

As the interview begins, we dive right into a powerful story that is featured in the book. Sarah, who works at a firm, is being asked to do something which she knows is not acceptable. In short, Sarah decides to walk away from her job. Richard confronts this decision with the reality that many of us simply cannot do that due to a host of various responsibilities. Here at TheSchoolHouse302 we have joked on several occasions about the fact that our growing list of adult responsibilities can limit our courage. Throughout this interview, and in his book, The Conscience Code, Richard describes how we all need to learn how to stand-and-fight versus the alternative, cut-and-run. 

Richard eloquently describes People of Conscience as those individuals who bring their sense of right and wrong to work and then listen to their internal voice as they work to lead in the directions of their values. 

He beautifully describes the CRAFT of ethics in the book. Richard also refers to it in the show and how it is used–you need this tool! 

  • Compassion
  • Respect 
  • Accountability 
  • Fairness 
  • Truth 

Richard notes that humans are social creatures and that even when we feel alone we have allies. In moments of isolation, we need to seek a partner, mentor, teacher, or colleague who believes what we believe–the power of two. 

You’ll love the practical nature of the OODA Loop developed by Air Force Colonel John Boyd. It is a great strategy to use for decision-making. In essence, value-conflicts are multi-stage events; they require a loop, always returning to observation. 

  • Observe 
  • Own
  • Decide 
  • Act 

We love the graphic, taken from https://expertprogrammanagement.com/.

Richard follows Robert Caildini (Joe is also a big fan). Check out Influence, Pre-Suasion, and Richard’s book, which Caildini said he would put in his top three if he had to only take three books with him in life, Bargaining for Advantage.  

Richard wastes no time when we ask about the onething that people should do on a regular basis–Meditate! Check out our incredible interview with Valerie Brown and Kirsten Olson if you want to explore a powerful approach to self-awareness and mindfulness.

We were intrigued to learn that Richard is interested in learning more about how people change their beliefs. 

As professional learners, we are always interested to hear what supports an individual’s growth and Richard uses Covey’s advice: Seek first to understand and then to be understood. The power in this strategy is that all we have to do is be aware. The good news is that we already have the ability to do this each and every day.

Lastly, Richard leaves all of us with a challenge–engage and see what happens. 

As always, let us know what you think of this with a like, a follow, or a comment. Find us on Twitter, YouTube, iTunes, Facebook, & SoundCloud. And, again, if you want one simple model for leading better and growing faster per month, follow this blog by entering your email at the top right of the screen.

TheSchoolHouse302 is about getting to simple by maximizing effective research-based strategies that empower individuals to lead better and grow faster.

Joe & T.J. 

This episode was brought to you by GhostBed, a family-owned business of sleep experts with 20+ years of experience. With 30K+ 5-star reviews, you can’t go wrong with GhostBed. Their mattresses are handcrafted, and they come with a 101-night-at-home-sleep trial. For a limited time, you can get 30% by using our code — SH302 — at checkout. And, even if you tell someone about GhostBed, you can earn a $100 referral reward. Go to Ghostbed.com today and use SH302 at checkout. 

What You Should Know About Building A Social Emotional Learning Culture from Thomas Hoerr

What You Should Know About Building A Social Emotional Learning Culture from Thomas Hoerr

Who Is Thomas Hoerr?

Thomas R. Hoerr retired after leading the New City School in St. Louis, Missouri for 34 years and is now the Emeritus Head of School. He is currently a Scholar In Residence at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, and he teaches in the Educational Leadership program, preparing prospective principals. He also led the ISACS New Heads Network and founded the Non-Profit Management Program at Washington University in St. Louis. Hoerr has written five books, and his newest book is Taking Social Emotional Learning Schoolwide: The Formative Five Success Skills for Students and Staff. He has written more than 150 articles, including “The Principal Connection” column in Educational Leadership Magazine from 2004 to 2017.

Major Takeaways from Our Interview with Thomas Hoerr:

Tom wastes no time in this interview by quickly acknowledging that academics in the school set the floor not the ceiling. His insight about David Shield’s moral and character development versus content learned uncovers the power in what schools can be.

His advice for administrators right now: “grab a cup of coffee and take a deep breath.” His next bit of advice, totally focuses on developing the SEL culture that every school needs. 

He discusses how language is key and how simply changing the name of faculty meetings to “learning meetings” sets a different expectation for staff.

Tom talks about the Formative Five and how you should not attempt all five at once. 

You don’t want to miss what he says about the power of halls and walls. 

Tom continues to learn and grow and finds incredible value in Howard Gardner, and his new book is A Synthesizing Mind

His pursuit to seek differing views to broaden his own understanding is profound. He shares sage advice: listen more than you talk and ask more than you tell

In an ever-changing and diverse world, Tom humbly admits that he really works to understand people from a diverse background. 

Tom used to think that knowledge and being smart were critical to success but now he realizes that compassion, empathy, and SEL are the gate to real knowledge and understanding.  

Let us know what you’re reading and who else you want us to bring on the show by contacting us at contact@theschoolhouse302.com

We can’t wait to hear from you. 

Joe & T.J. 

This episode was brought to you by GhostBed, a family-owned business of sleep experts with 20+ years of experience. With 30K+ 5-star reviews, you can’t go wrong with GhostBed. Their mattresses are handcrafted, and they come with a 101-night-at-home-sleep trial. For a limited time, you can get 30% by using our code — SH302 — at checkout. And, even if you tell someone about GhostBed, you can earn a $100 referral reward. Go to Ghostbed.com today and use SH302 at checkout. 

Student Engagement During Disruptive Times–Insights from Dwight Carter

Student Engagement During Disruptive Times–Insights from Dwight Carter

Who Is Dwight Carter?

Dwight Carter is a nationally recognized school leader from Central Ohio and has been an educator for 27 years. Because of his collaborative and innovative leadership, in 2010, he was inducted into the Jostens Renaissance Educator Hall of Fame. He was also named a 2013 National Association of Secondary School Principals Digital Principal of the Year, the 2014 Academy of Arts and Science Education High School Principal of the Year, the 2015 Ohio Alliance of Black School Educators Principal of the Year, and a 2021 Columbus Afrocentric Early College Sankofa Emerging Leader Award winner. He is currently the Director of Student Support Systems for the Eastland-Fairfield Career and Technical Schools District. 

 

He is the co-author of three books: What’s In Your Space? Five Steps to Better School and Classroom Design (Corwin, 2015), Leading Schools in Disruptive Times: How to Survive Hyper-change (Corwin 2017), and the second edition of Leading Schools in Disruptive Times (Corwin, 2021).

Major Takeaways from Our Interview with Dwight Carter

Dwight dives into how we have to move past our feeling that these are “unprecedented times” so that we don’t inadvertently limit our schools and classrooms in ways that we may not even be aware of.

He specifies that students need consistency and safety. Don’t miss how he defines safety as multi-dimensional–emotional, social, and communal. Social and emotional learning wasn’t created by the pandemic, but it’s compounded by it. 

 

His perspective on the importance of having a system of accountability after implementing ways to connect with students is critical for us to know every child. The conversation on the “dot exercise” is insightful and most importantly doable. 

We dive into the power of the Jostens Renaissance Education as a framework that Dwight uses with students. Don’t miss what he has to say about finding out how we need to know how students want to be celebrated.

Listen to what Dwight has to say about hyper-change and to-do lists. 

Dwight willingly gets personal and describes what he wants to learn how to do, mainly because it’s limiting family experiences. 

 

Dwight references The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks. You need this book if you don’t have it already. 

 

Check out the VIA Assessment, something that Dwight uses to continue his leadership growth. 

 

Let us know what you’re reading and who else you want us to bring on the show by contacting us at contact@theschoolhouse302.com

 

We can’t wait to hear from you. 

Joe & T.J.

This episode was brought to you by GhostBed, a family-owned business of sleep experts with 20+ years of experience. With 30K+ 5-star reviews, you can’t go wrong with GhostBed. Their mattresses are handcrafted, and they come with a 101-night-at-home-sleep trial. For a limited time, you can get 30% by using our code — SH302 — at checkout. And, even if you tell someone about GhostBed, you can earn a $100 referral reward. Go to Ghostbed.com today and use SH302 at checkout. 

What Every Principal Leader Ought to Know About Personal Development and the Power of A Mastermind Group

What Every Principal Leader Ought to Know About Personal Development and the Power of A Mastermind Group

Learn more about Danny Bauer

Daniel Bauer is an unorthodox Ruckus Maker who has mentored thousands of school leaders through his Better Leaders Better Schools blog, books, podcasts, and powerful coaching experiences. 

His new book, The Mastermind: Unlocking the Talent Within Every School Leader introduces a proprietary process called the ABCs of powerful professional development™ which is changing the landscape of how school leaders experience professional development. 

Key Thoughts from Our Interview with Danny Bauer

  • Danny wastes no time about the harsh reality that 90% of school leaders who leave their school, leave the profession. The cost of retention is too high, which is why joining a community of dedicated professionals is paramount.

  • Listen to Danny explore the imposter syndrome, how it limits our abilities, why it kicks in, and how we can push past our self-defeating behaviors when we are a part of the right community.

  • Danny shares a quote: What’s ordinary for you is extraordinary for me. ~ Derek Sivers. Check out entrepreneur and founder of CD Baby, Derek Sivers, you won’t be disappointed.

  • A big part of the Mastermind process is the “hotseat” protocol. It’s where we challenge one another to do and be better. Listen to what Danny says about the collective IQ.

  • What is Danny looking forward to? Eventually, he wants to serve 1200+ leaders in his Mastermind. This is where the interview gets very tangible, since Danny tells about what he learned from The Strangest Secret by Earl Nightingale.

  • Teaching others is what leads to his growth because it helps to make the learning stick. He is always looking for something that stretches his thinking. Check out the AltMBA, an investment that he made in his own leadership.

  • Lastly, listen to what he says about “just cause.”

Let us know what you’re reading and who else you want us to bring on the show by contacting us at contact@theschoolhouse302.com.

We can’t wait to hear from you.

Joe & T.J.

 

 

Exploring the Work of John Dewey and How He Impacted the World in the Wake of Covid19

Exploring the Work of John Dewey and How He Impacted the World in the Wake of Covid19

The Information Age and Principal Leadership 

We live in a time that has been deemed the “information age.” Some argue that in the 21st Century we can be exposed to more information in one week than those who lived in the 17th Century would be exposed to in their entire lives. In many ways that makes our mere existence more challenging as we look to lead our schools effectively. We need discrete skills that enable us to process and filter an abundance of information. Knowing how to discern and weed through all of the channels in order to make sound decisions is a marquee skill of any effective principal. That skill needs to be coupled with another critical and complementary skill, which is knowing how to apply that knowledge in actionable and strategic ways. 

Who is John Dewey and How Did He Impact the World?

Effective principal leaders know how to synthesize information and apply it to the unique needs of their schools. 

This is what brought us back to the work of John Dewey this month. We wanted to study the claims that Dewey might have made about teaching and learning during COVID19. And, we explore this in our 302 Thoughts this month.

Taking what we’ve learned and experienced from the pandemic, we sought to embark on a tried and true classroom practice: problem based learning. We focus on the good that can come from such a tumultuous time in education. We wanted to add an abstract element to spark creativity, so we did our best to filter our ideas through the powerful lens of the great educational reformer, John Dewey.

Critical Ideas from our 302 Thoughts: Student-Centered Learning  

  1. Students and teachers need support in multiple ways and beyond just learning in the classroom. As humans we are confronted with challenges that stifle and limit teaching and learning. Great principals need to understand, recognize, and build support for students and teachers.
    1. A Creative Way to Support Students
      1. Affinity Groups
    2. A Creative Way to Support Teachers
      1. Faculty-led before or after school wellness classes (such as yoga).  
  2. Engagement is everything. Students need to be engaged in the classroom and teachers need to be engaged in their departments and the school as a whole.
    1. A Creative Way to Engage Students
      1. Require students to create questions, not answers, on what is being learned. Stoke their creativity.
    2. A Creative Way to Engage Teachers
      1. Ask them to specifically identify the professional learning experiences that they want.
  3. Opportunities are found in the right mindset. Going through the last year and not learning from all of our trials would be an injustice to our school system.
    1. A Creative Way to Provide Opportunities for Students
      1. Continue to employ the various instructional tools and supports that helped students learn (stay tuned for our ESSER focused blog next month). 
    2. A Creative Way to Provide Opportunities for Teachers
      1. Create ad hoc groups to determine the aspects of hybrid and remote learning that should not be discontinued.

Ultimately, it is up to us to decide if we will learn from the great thinkers and reformers of the past and capitalize on the opportunities of today, no matter what form they take. COVID19 was completely unexpected, and it certainly upended our educational system. Let’s take advantage of what we accomplished and the lessons we learned thus far.

We hope you like this month’s 302 Thoughts as we continue to discuss leadership and the impact that you can have on your community. Next month, we go live with our first ever open audience 302 Thoughts; we hope to see you there.  

Stay tuned for more nuggets of wisdom, podcasts, books to read, reflection sessions, and the best resources for leading better and growing faster in schools. Follow us at theschoolhouse302.com to join thousands of leaders who get our content each month. Send this to a friend. 

As always, let us know what you think of this with a like, a follow, or a comment. Find us on Twitter, YouTube, iTunes, Facebook, & SoundCloud. And, again, if you want one simple model for leading better and growing faster per month, follow this blog by entering your email at the top right of the screen.

TheSchoolHouse302 is about getting to simple by maximizing effective research-based strategies that empower individuals to lead better and grow faster.

Joe & T.J. 

This episode was brought to you by GhostBed, a family-owned business of sleep experts with 20+ years of experience. With 30K+ 5-star reviews, you can’t go wrong with GhostBed. Their mattresses are handcrafted, and they come with a 101-night-at-home-sleep trial. For a limited time, you can get 30% by using our code — SH302 — at checkout. And, even if you tell someone about GhostBed, you can earn a $100 referral reward. Go to Ghostbed.com today and use SH302 at checkout. 

Claim Your FREE Copy to Our Praise Practice- Practical Praise Giving Tips for Principals

Claim Your FREE Copy to Our Praise Practice- Practical Praise Giving Tips for Principals

Learn how you can give practical praise each day as you lead your school to develop a better and more positive culture through this complimentary eBook we use in our workshops to help principals all over the nation and subscribe for more resources like this one delivered to your inbox. 

Congratulations on claiming your copy - you may download it here: https://theschoolhouse302.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/Technical-Tip-Praise-Practice-A-Model-for-Specific-Praise.pdf