Servant and Service Leadership: Harmony Between the Two for Superior Principal Leadership
Servant leadership is touted and recognized as an effective way to lead. Principals who embrace servant leadership build their winning team by empowering their school community at all levels. This month, we draw a simple distinction between servant leadership and service leadership. We contend that service leadership is the actionable aspect of effective leadership that goes beyond the general duties of the job. Service leaders provide something special and unique for each person on the team or for the community at large. They don’t just empower, they provide.
To better understand how to be a service leader, we offer the 4 Ps of Service Leadership, which we breakdown in this month’s 302 Thoughts. This component of our One Thing Series podcast, takes a deep dive into this month’s topic so that anyone in an educational leadership position–district leaders, principals, assistant principals, instructional coaches, and teacher leaders–all see how they can uniquely support a learning environment throughout the entire school community.
We discuss how service leadership is the engine behind servant leadership. Essentially, the way we empower others impacts how they can serve in their roles.
We break down the 4 P model and how it can guide our daily work.
We emphasize the power of a positive attitude and how it really is a choice.
We talk about turning pride into something of virtue rather than voice.
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.
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.
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Our Review and Reflect series embraces the powerful sentiment from Soren Kierkegaard: “Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.” Throughout this post, we take a deep dive into our leadership content so that you can develop the skills you need to lead better and grow faster.
Key Model to Help Guide the Learning of a Leader
#1. Be Vulnerable — Always think like a novice, never overestimate your own expertise.
#2. Be Curious — Don’t assume that you know something in depth when you may only have a very cursory knowledge of the subject.
#3. Be Versatile — Expand your willingness to use multiple modalities as a learner.
#4. Be Open-Minded — Often there are multiple perspectives that must be explored and considered.
Great Leaders Are Avid Readers
Review: In our #readthisseries we featured practical books that offer actionable information to improve your goal-getting.
Who better to ask then Dr. Richard Elmore on this topic. His on-line HarvardX course, Leaders of Learning, has been taken by more than 100,000 learners internationally since its inception in 2014. From 1995 to 2014, his research and consulting practice focused on building instructional improvement capabilities of teachers and administrators through direct observation and analysis of classroom practice.
Listen to the entire podcast on iTunes. One major takeaway from our conversation with Richard is his insistent focus on the beginner’s mindset. His description of how this frames our thinking to improve our learning is powerful.
Listen to the entire podcast on iTunes, One Thing Series, and please rate and like (it helps).
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.
Review: Review the four hacks and reflect on how well you use them. Let’s use feedback as an example. In what areas of your professional life did you receive feedback? If you are not receiving feedback, ask for it. Your own impression of your work and performance will not make you better. While we always strive to be reflective practitioners, cognitive scientists remind us that reflecting on our work when we’re doing it is near impossible for the brain.
Reflect: Identify key areas of your life where you would like to receive feedback more often. These areas can vary from how you are generally viewed by others to your actual performance on a specific task at work. See below for a few feedback prompts:
Do I honor commitments?
Am I reliable?
Do I show up to meetings on time? Even on Zoom.
How effectively do I run our meetings?
Ask these prompts to a trusted colleague and give them a scale to use (1-10). When they respond, ask for evidence and one thing that you can do better/differently. Then put that item into practice. That’s how we grow faster than we would without feedback.
Reflect: All three of these books delve into our behaviors and mindsets; what is one behavior that you are working on to improve or change? Try to think at the micro-level.
Mindfulness is the capacity to have compassion for ourselves as leaders and to carry that compassion into the world for others. ~ Valerie Brown & Kirsten Olson
Reflect: What is one major takeaway from the podcast that you can implement right now in your day or life?
Review: in which areas of your life do you need to be more mindful? This doesn’t have to be complicated, just something that needs more attention–something that may be on autopilot that you can notice more often throughout your day.
That’s our #ReviewAndReflect for this month, all on the topic of excellence. We can’t wait to hear from you.
PS — We’re getting ready to start our first ever Assistant Principal Mastermind. If you’re an assistant principal, and you want to lead better and grow faster, contact us at email@example.com so that we can put your name on the list (almost full).
PPS — Did you know that we’re running our first ever Masterclass on Candid and Compassionate Feedback. Starting in January, you can join us for five sessions on the leadership pitfalls of candor and how to solve them. If you’ve ever had a feedback conversation go wrong, you know how bad that feels. We’ve identified 9 problems and their solutions. Find out more here.
This is TheSchoolHouse302’s monthly #reviewandreflect, wrapping up our focus on leading change is such unpredictable times. We focused this month on growth and what we’ve learned so far during the pandemic.
Our review and reflect series embraces the powerful sentiment about learning, brought forth by Soren Kierkegaard: “Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.”
Don’t miss our quick Review and Reflect video. We reviewed this month’s content and reflected on our own leadership lessons learned.
Did you see our blog post, Educators Strike Back. It’s been called a “must read” for teachers and leaders.
PS — We’re getting ready to start our first ever Assistant Principal Mastermind. If you’re an assistant principal, and you want to lead better and grow faster, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can put your name on the list (almost full). PSS — Did you know that we’re running our first ever Masterclass on Candid and Compassionate Feedback. Starting in January, you can join us for five sessions on the leadership pitfalls of candor and how to solve them. If you’ve ever had a feedback conversation go wrong, you know how bad that feels. We’ve identified 9 problems and their solutions. Find out more here.
PS — We’re getting ready to start our first ever Assistant Principal Mastermind. If you’re an assistant principal and you want to lead better and grow faster, contact us at email@example.com so that we can put your name on the list (almost full).
This is TheSchoolHouse302’s monthly #reviewandreflect, wrapping up our focus on moving from where you are and where you want to be. This month we introduced the concept of the H-Gap and how it can transform your practices to lead more effectively and achieve key goals within your classroom, school, and district.
Our review and reflect series embraces the powerful sentiment from Soren Kierkegaard: “Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.”
This month we are excited to feature Nick Hoover, Principal of Meredith Middle School, as he digs into our latest content on TheSchoolHouse302.com.
Nick provides great insight into how he uses the H-Gap to reduce the detractors that limit or thwart his success.
Don’t miss what he says about analyzing the things that we have to stop doing if we want to be successful.
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