Wednesday, January 5, 2011

What are you really worth...?

There are lots of things that people love: new car smell, walks on the beach, winning the lottery and most importantly, opening a gas station soda only to find out you won a free soda!

In addition to these most cherished things in our lives, I also really love to be inspired and motivated. Over the last couple weeks there have been two pieces in particular that have so eloquently come together in perfect harmony...

1) - When I asked 27 administrators what they loved about their jobs I received some awesome responses. Educators making a difference turned out to be a great compilation of great comments by a great group of administrators. In particular there was one comment by @mrgrimshaw that really hit home with me...

     "20 years ago I wanted to prove that I could make something happen, but today I take a lot of pride in helping and supporting others make the magic happen!"

This comment re-emphasized the notion that it has nothing to do with you and has everything to do with our students and colleagues...

2) - Today I had the opportunity to have a conversation with Library Media Specialist Tonya Thompson. We discussed the role of a leader and how one truly knows whether they are worth their leadership grain of salt. We determined (as if we were some world renowned academic institution) that there are good leaders and there are great leaders (we all know there is another type, but that is not for here).

A leader with above average worth will be recognized as being good only during his/her tenure...while a leader with a high worth will be recognized as being a great leader only after his/her tenure has ended.

These two different events have made it very clear to me that one's true worth will and can only be determined once they are gone. If the castle crumbles after your exit, then you might have been good at the time, but you did a poor job of helping anyone else to become great.

As educators we are in the business of empowering and encouraging. If we are always the glue holding everything together then we have not done our jobs, and at best we will be good. When we have students and colleagues who can excel and thrive in our absence, then we will have arrived at great.

A great leader of high worth wants to help others become great leaders of high worth. Greatness can be created or destroy...the law of conservation of energy need not apply...

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