Principal - November/December 2019 - 31

US Airways Capt. Chesley B. "Sully"
Sullenberger might have panicked when he
realized that his plane was going down. But by
remaining calm, assessing the situation in the
few seconds he had, and acting deliberately,
he landed the airplane on the Hudson River,
saving everyone on board. That is peace in
chaos-not only was Sullenberger empowered
to make decisions, but he also had the necessary
information, equipment, and confidence to do
so with thoughtful intelligence. He was ready to
take responsibility, and he acted.
Know that chaos is part of the norm. In the book
Made to Stick, Chip and Dan Heath say that "no plan
survives contact with the enemy." You might make a
plan, but it will be of little consequence unless the
enemy behaves exactly as you expect.
6. Leadership requires personal, social, and
emotional skills. Leaders can have all the technical skills in the world, but that knowledge won't
mean much if they don't also know how to interact
positively with others. Effective leaders never forget
that students, teachers, administrators, and other
stakeholders are people, regardless of their roles.
People need acceptance and understanding. The
most successful school leaders are open-minded
and ready to learn from others. They are also
flexible in their thinking within a system of core
values-persistence, resilience, and optimism.
To paraphrase Sun Tzu's Art of War, the great
warrior prepares for battle by finding ways
to avoid it. The great warrior takes an enemy
whole and does not destroy it, respecting life,
property, and land. When leaders are empowered and therefore confident, they are not
ashamed to show emotion, to care openly, and
to take responsibility for the people around
them. Anyone can give orders; not everyone
has the compassion necessary to understand
people, build trust and loyalty, and bring individuals together. Build bridges, not walls.
Good leaders have what author Daniel
Goleman calls "emotional intelligence"-the
self-awareness, empathy, self-regulation,
compassion, and intuition necessary to understand others' emotional states. They are

balanced and understand their own biases. By
carefully listening and responding to others,
leaders can construct emotionally safe situations. Feeling safe supports empowerment;
people who feel emotionally protected are
more likely to take initiative and risks.
Developing these skills builds positive traits,
including resilience, communication, motivation, and stress management, all of which
establish a norm for everyone in the system. As
a leader who empowers and distributes leadership, you must build a culture where there is
understanding and tolerance for everyday challenges, failure, and chaos.
Implementation of Empowerment

Not everyone wants to be empowered. There
will be those who look to the administration
to solve problems. Often, the same people who
don't want the responsibility of empowerment
will complain that they were not included in a
decision. They will sometimes undermine the
decision, then complain that the decision-makers have failed once again.
Then there are those who willingly take over
the decision-making process. They want to control what happens to ensure they get what they
want. Sometimes, they want the ear of the institutional leader so their needs are met, but they
don't have to take responsibility for the solution.
Most educators genuinely want to be part
of the solution, however. These individuals
will work collaboratively and put aside their
egos for the greater good of the school and
students. These people want and need the
information and skills necessary for empowerment as they devote themselves to improving
learning for all students.
What will entice everyone to get on board
with empowerment and distributed leadership?
Most people will be ready; others will need a
little push. The most resistant will need to be
part of small successes, building to greater
and greater commitment. To paraphrase
Shakespeare, some are born empowered, some
become empowered, and some have empowerment thrust upon them.
Anticipate and avoid such barriers by developing a culture that brings people with you, taking
every opportunity to explain what is being done
and why, and demonstrating the key benefits of
your actions.

DELIBERATE
ABOUT
DISTRIBUTION
A 2017 study of distributed
school leadership styles
cited in How School
Leaders Contribute to
Student Success: The Four
Paths Framework says that
"Planful Alignment"-a
path that features
deliberate discussion
among principals,
department heads, and
teachers about who will
carry out which leadership
functions-has "significant
positive associations with
academic optimism," which
in turn has been shown
to contribute to student
achievement.

Raymond McNulty is president of Successful Practices
Network.
www.naesp.org

Principal n November/December 2019

31


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Principal - November/December 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Principal - November/December 2019

from the editor
Snapshots
5 Things
Intertwined for Achievement
Planting the SEAD
Making PLCs a Plus
Measuring Up
Look Out for the Leader
Engagement Across the Generations
The Sum of Its Parts
Putting the “Fun” in Fundraising
NAESP 2019 National Distinguished Principals
In the Spotlight
Practitioner’s Corner
Raising the Bar
Principal’s Bookshelf
School Law
NAESP Partners & Advertiser Index
Speaking Out
Parents & Schools
Parents & Schools
Principal - November/December 2019 - Cover1
Principal - November/December 2019 - Cover2
Principal - November/December 2019 - 1
Principal - November/December 2019 - 2
Principal - November/December 2019 - 3
Principal - November/December 2019 - from the editor
Principal - November/December 2019 - 5
Principal - November/December 2019 - Snapshots
Principal - November/December 2019 - 7
Principal - November/December 2019 - 5 Things
Principal - November/December 2019 - 9
Principal - November/December 2019 - Intertwined for Achievement
Principal - November/December 2019 - 11
Principal - November/December 2019 - 12
Principal - November/December 2019 - 13
Principal - November/December 2019 - 14
Principal - November/December 2019 - Planting the SEAD
Principal - November/December 2019 - Making PLCs a Plus
Principal - November/December 2019 - 17
Principal - November/December 2019 - 18
Principal - November/December 2019 - 19
Principal - November/December 2019 - Measuring Up
Principal - November/December 2019 - 21
Principal - November/December 2019 - 22
Principal - November/December 2019 - 23
Principal - November/December 2019 - Look Out for the Leader
Principal - November/December 2019 - 25
Principal - November/December 2019 - Engagement Across the Generations
Principal - November/December 2019 - 27
Principal - November/December 2019 - The Sum of Its Parts
Principal - November/December 2019 - 29
Principal - November/December 2019 - 30
Principal - November/December 2019 - 31
Principal - November/December 2019 - Putting the “Fun” in Fundraising
Principal - November/December 2019 - 33
Principal - November/December 2019 - 34
Principal - November/December 2019 - 35
Principal - November/December 2019 - NAESP 2019 National Distinguished Principals
Principal - November/December 2019 - 37
Principal - November/December 2019 - 38
Principal - November/December 2019 - 39
Principal - November/December 2019 - 40
Principal - November/December 2019 - 41
Principal - November/December 2019 - 42
Principal - November/December 2019 - 43
Principal - November/December 2019 - In the Spotlight
Principal - November/December 2019 - 45
Principal - November/December 2019 - Practitioner’s Corner
Principal - November/December 2019 - 47
Principal - November/December 2019 - 48
Principal - November/December 2019 - 49
Principal - November/December 2019 - Raising the Bar
Principal - November/December 2019 - 51
Principal - November/December 2019 - Principal’s Bookshelf
Principal - November/December 2019 - 53
Principal - November/December 2019 - School Law
Principal - November/December 2019 - NAESP Partners & Advertiser Index
Principal - November/December 2019 - 56
Principal - November/December 2019 - 57
Principal - November/December 2019 - Speaking Out
Principal - November/December 2019 - 59
Principal - November/December 2019 - Parents & Schools
Principal - November/December 2019 - 61
Principal - November/December 2019 - 62
Principal - November/December 2019 - 63
Principal - November/December 2019 - Parents & Schools
Principal - November/December 2019 - Cover3
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