The series started with building the foundations of collaborative leadership as each participant was asked to focus on their own authentic leadership narrative. It offered the opportunity to reflect on the attributes of great leaders and convey one's passion and beliefs through a powerful narrative that connects with people at an emotional level. Key concepts included:
- differentiating management from leadership
- (being aware of) unintended consequences
- (step into our) vulnerability to create trust.
The workshop participants were able to lean into a korero with Derek Wenmouth who focused on leadership of learning. Derek described great leaders as having a vision, a moral compass and are relational which combine to generate dynamic energy for everyone involved. He identified some signs of leadership "entropy" when this energy cannot be sustained and things start to slide backwards. He suggested that a mindset of appreciative enquiry is critical for leaders of learning. See his blog for further information on this topic at https://futuremakers.nz/2021/08/12/leadership-entropy/
We started to explore the attributes of collaborative leadership and why this approach is fundamental to leading schools. Research from Oxford Leadership (2011) shows that:
"... all of us together can be smarter, more creative, and more competent than any of us alone, especially when it comes to addressing the kinds of novel, complex and multi-faceted problems that organisations (schools) face today."
The transition from an "ego"-system to an "eco-system" is challenging and our participants are eager to learn more practical ways in which they can embed this approach. These will be an important part of subsequent workshops in the series.
The following feedback reflects the deep reflection that has taken place in the workshop:
The workshop gave me "time to reflect on my leadership purpose and the influence I have on my team"
"Great to spend time reflecting on our narrative and understanding ourselves and others leadership for collective improvement"
The workshop has begun to "reignite my passion for leadership"
We are really looking forward to further recharging of leadership passion across the sector!