There is a strong connection between strategic plans and the people responsible for implementing those plans. Last month we offered 4 essential questions of Strategic Planning; What has God called us to do? Where are we in response to God’s call? Where is He leading us? How will we get there? Each Christian school must be clear about its mission, core values, and key result areas. Great leaders ask essential questions. Great leaders can clearly articulate God’s call on their life, where they are in response to God’s call, where God is leading them, and how will they get there.
I believe that strategic leaders should articulate a clear personal leadership philosophy. Here are essential questions of a personal leadership philosophy;
How do I define leadership?
What can those I lead expect from me as a leader?
What do I expect from those I lead?
How do I operate as a leader?
What ticks me off as a leader?
What encourages me a leader?
Leaders are readers and love to read about leadership. There are unlimited books and articles about leadership. Great leaders consolidate all they read and learn about leadership into their own personal expression of what they believe to be the essential elements of leadership. What we believe to be the essential elements of leadership will determine how we lead.
Those we lead must know what we expect from them and how we respond to various circumstances. It has been my experience that when everything is going well, leaders respond in a manner consistent with their natural leadership style. However, when circumstances are difficult they may operate in a different style. For example, my natural style is a consensus, team building, synergistic style, but when consensus and synergy are not being achieved, I tend to get much more autocratic and directive.
What leaders expect is determined by what leaders believe to be essential. However, each leader must understand that the leadership style of those they lead may differ. Great leadership teams celebrate their differences by realizing that each member of the team brings strengths and perspectives necessary to the whole.
Great teams understand how each member of the team will respond to various circumstances and challenges, as well as what “ticks off” other members of the team.
As strategic plans are pursued by strategic leaders, the school’s mission and values achieve results in key areas. BMSG recommends that each leader write out their personal leadership philosophy shaped by the essential questions listed above. Each leader should share their personal leadership philosophy with other team members and with those they lead.
BMSG has developed a team-building workshop to help school leaders build synergistic leadership teams. Let us know if we can help your school strengthen your leadership team.
- Mickey Bowdon