2001- Jim Collins publishes a book titled Good to Great. This book discusses leadership, and it identifies leaders who have “personal humility” and “professional will.” This style of leadership and management focuses on individuals who are disciplined and hard working. They are willing to adapt to new technology or other resources and will embrace these resources whenever possible. He discusses the importance of getting the right people on the bus, meaning those who are resistant to change will be left behind. He also refers to the “Flywheel,” which is the idea if you keep promoting something and continue to head in the right direction then you will build momentum. Collins believes that once this momentum starts it can carry you a long way. These are important qualities that individuals must realize. He stresses that people need to be realistic rather than idealistic. You must be clear in the direction you are headed. With all the changes that occur in education you must be able to keep up. This book is a great reminder of how today’s educators can risk becoming complacent, especially in times of economic hardship.
– Professional Learning Communities (PLC) take charge in education. These communities are made up of teachers and supported by principals and other staff members. The objective of these PLC’s is to allow educators an opportunity to collaborate, enhance leadership skills, and focus on impacting student learning. Through PLC’s teachers can develop strategies and devise lesson plans that are more effective in the classroom. They will also ensure that individuals continue the shared vision of the school. These are important in education today because in order for schools to succeed everyone must share the vision and have the opportunity to play an integral part in the organization.
21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership: Follow Them and People Will Follow You, published by John Maxwell. This book identifies 21 laws that help individuals become great leaders. He discusses various components such as the concepts that leaders are not appointed or assigned. Instead, influence plays a major role. Another factor is making sure leaders build relationships. Maxwell refers to this as “helping the heart before you help the hand.” Not only should one build relationships with others but it is equally important to understand that great leaders also develop future leaders. One must always remember that preparing for the future is vital. These laws focus on the leader as an individual and what can be done to help an organization be more effective and efficient. I believe these are great rules that all leaders should follow because it can be hard when teachers begin the process of fine-tuning their leadership skills. There are many challenges one will face and being reminded of what leadership is can help individuals make the transition much easier.
Edie Holcomb publishes Asking the Right Questions. This book focuses on implementing school change. It examines what schools and individuals need to do in order for change to be successful. She discusses leadership, curriculum, assessments, instruction, accountability and supervision. When a school or district is going through change it is important to ask the right questions: Where are we? Where do we want to go? How will we get there? How will we know we are there? How will we sustain it? These questions are important to focus on when change is being implemented. Too often in education there are demands to change. However, if a planned course of action is not followed then change will not occur, and that will negatively impact the results.
Collins, J. C. (2001). Good to great: why some companies make the leap--and others dont. New York, NY: Harper Business. Holcomb, E. L. (2009). Asking the right questions: tools for collaboration and school change (3rd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press. Maxwell, J. C. (2007). The 21 irrefutable laws of leadership: follow them and people will follow you (Rev. and updated 10th anniversary ed.). Nashville, Tenn.: Thomas Nelson. Professional Learning Communities - References. (n.d.). The Center for Comprehensive School Reform and Improvement - Home. Retrieved June 4, 2012, from http://www.centerforcsri.org/plc/references