Leading Educational Complexity in the midst of a Pandemic.

“Leadership is often the after thought of Educational Change”
– Andy Hargreaves


As we emerge from Covid-19 (she says hopefully), the role of educational leaders continues to be complex. That most of us are still standing, is miraculous; that some of us have taken time to intentionally grow our teams, and ourselves is incredible. Yet,  I am also noticing leaders in education managing uncertainty as the rules change again – and supporting communities with diversity of perspectives around what is right and good. These leaders and teams are often implementing rules they didn’t make, and they are two years in. 

What is called for here? Compassion? Support? Trust? All of the above?

One of the key areas that comes up again and again in teams is communication. Building skills for transformational conversations impacts everyone. I consistently see the power of this learning played out with leaders and teams.

In partnership with the Ministry of Education in 2019, we explored transformational coach-like conversations across three very different school boards. The data from that included points such as: 

  • Leaders who expanded their toolbox to include being coach-like, increased their awareness, created more opportunities to be curious and even vulnerable.
  • Conversations with colleagues, and other stakeholders were better, people could see and feel the difference, especially after the 3rd phase (approx. 18 months) of the work.
  • Highly skilled leaders came together to strengthen their tool box in the areas of coaching feedback, and impact on culture.

What’s exciting about this, is that this learning continues! 

I encourage you to read the full report about that study here as well as my article about building a coach-like culture.

Finally, I ask you to consider how you, as a leader in education, prioritize your work as leader and with your team. 

Let’s make Andy Hargreaves quote untrue!!