Reflecting on the various leadership styles I have adopted over the years, the leadership behavior I exhibit depends on the situation. Overall, I use democratic practices, unless the boat is about to crash into the rocks and I need everyone to row. In terms of understanding myself, I know I value building connections and relationships. I also know that I am a very task-oriented individual, competitive, and diligent. I know that not everyone shares my same traits or strengths, but that everyone has attributes to tap into. Part of the challenge is being able to mobilize all of one’s resources. This involves understanding the culture and school climate (how everyone interacts), establishing a compelling purpose and direction and aligning the vision with areas that might be out of compliance. To do this requires building and repairing relationships and collaborating with all stakeholders. Finally, it is important to be knowledgeable and competent in best instructional practices and be able to implement the practices school-wide.
Of the various leadership theories discussed in Green (2013): servant, transformational, transactional, expectancy, distributive, synergistic, and exchange (pp. 72-73), I lean more toward using a transformational style or a distributive style. In terms of transformational style, I am good at mobilizing resources and motivating others. Some of this probably stems from my coaching experience in competitions such as Mock Trial and International Economic Summit and professional leadership experiences such as department team leader for History-Social Science. Although one of my years as department chair our department decided on two chairs to share the position, which appears to fit more with participation leadership theory where there was more of a sharing of power and authority (p. 114). In terms of a distributive leadership style, I have developed this area more in recent years partly because of growing school needs and my realization that more can be achieved through collaborative work and sharing responsibilities, than through individual effort alone.
My Essential Leadership Traits:
- Effective Communication Skills
My Leadership Behavior:
Democratic overall, but it does depend on the situation.
My Leadership Styles:
Green, Reginald L. Practicing the Art of Leadership (2013). 4th Edition.