Tenses Exercise

Fill in the blanks with an appropriate verb form. Answers 1. The boys were playing games when it started raining. 2. You were watching TV… Continue reading
from English Grammar https://www.englishgrammar.org/tenses-exercise-21/

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Virtual Mentorship for Emerging Leaders

Jodie Pierpoint on episode 243 of the 10-Minute Teacher Podcast

From the Cool Cat Teacher Blog by Vicki Davis

Follow @coolcatteacher on Twitter

Emerging administrator leaders and administrators are participating in an emerging leadership virtual mentorship program created by Jodie Pierpoint and many volunteers. Learn about this program, how you can join in, and how you can become a better mentor.

Jennifer Gonzalez has released her 2018 Teachers Guide to Technology with over 200 education technology tools including tools for assessment, flipped learning, presentations, parent engagement, video engagement and more. Jennifer gives you a description in simple language, a screenshot of the tool in action and then a play button that takes you to a video about how the tool works. Learn more at coolcatteacher.com/guide

Listen Now

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Enhanced Transcript

Virtual Mentorship for Emerging Leaders

Link to show: www.coolcatteacher.com/e243
Date: January 31, 2018

Vicki: Mentorship! It can be so hard to find a mentor, even to be a mentor.

Now some schools have official mentor programs, but our guest today Jody Pierpont @jodiepierpoint, an educator from Ohio, has a virtual mentorship program that she’s working with. She blogs and talks all about mentorship.

So Jody, tell us a little bit about what you’re doing.

Jody: Thank you, Vicki! I’m very excited to be here talking about this program.

I started this program in the summer of 2017. It started just as a whim. I had such wonderful mentors in my life, and as I started — I’m an aspiring school leader — and as I said, I’ve had wonderful mentors.

As I’m looking for a job I said there had to be more people like me that were also struggling to look for that perfect admin position, and what could I do to help other people.

There had to be more people like me looking for help

So what I did was I tweeted things out. I started blogging about it. I said, “Who’s like me? Who needs somebody to be on their side to help them look for some admin type positions?”

So I was very humbled. Over 20 people responded to me. I was looking for maybe four or five people. Twenty aspiring people just like myself responded to me. I said, “Oh! Now I have to find mentors!”

So then I blogged again, and I found another 20 people from around the United States. I set up this virtual mentorship program, where aspiring school leaders are set up with current school leaders K-12.

We have webinars, and we have one-one-one. They’re paired with whatever they are interested in going into. So whether it’s elementary or district leadership or high school leadership, and they have these organic one-on-one conversations outside of their brick-and-mortar buildings, and outside their own (mentorship).

Maybe they have mentorship within their own schools, but now they have these organic, one-to-one personalized mentorships with mentors outside that they are having some great conversations with.

Personalized mentorships with mentors outside their building

Vicki: OK, so how long has this been going?

Jody: We started in August of this year, so August 2017. My hope is to go with this cohort of people until about May or June. If it takes off, we’ll get another cohort of people for next year.

Vicki: So what are the results you’re seeing so far? What are people saying about this mentoring relationship that’s emerged?

Jody: Oh, there’s a lot of positive feedback from both the mentors and the mentees. What’s really exciting is we’re doing webinars about twice a month. We have 16 topics that we’re talking about.

People outside of this cohort are joining the webinars. So I’m getting positive feedback from not only in the cohort, but people outside the cohort, too.

People outside of this cohort are joining the webinars

People are joining. They’re responding, they’re getting the information our mentors are sharing. They’re just adding so much value and resources that people — not only aspiring leaders — are looking for, but people on the job hunt.

We just recently had a webinar on relationships, and why relationships in schools are so important. Anybody could have joined that. A lot of positive feedback came from these webinars.

Vicki: So these aspiring leaders… all 20 of them are looking for jobs? Is that basically it? Are they all finding jobs? How’s that going?

Jody: Right now, most of the cohort will be looking for jobs here starting in January. They’re aspiring now, so the hope would be to find them jobs. Or maybe they’re happy in their classroom now being a teacher, but all all of them are either attaining or will be looking for jobs this spring.

Vicki: You are passionate about mentoring. Why? It’s not just about the job search, is it.

Jody: No. Like I said, I have had wonderful mentors in my life. But I’m also a mentor, so it’s not just me finding somebody to mentor me. I think it’s also important to give back, as well.

It’s important to give back

No matter what stage we are in in our careers, I think it’s important to share those experiences and help grow somebody else.

So although I’m an aspiring school leader, and I need that guidance from somebody else, it’s important for me to give back as an educator for 17 years to share what I know about special education and about teaching.

So although I’m being mentored, I’m also mentoring other people. I have somebody that I’m mentoring right now that is a special education teacher. This is her fourth year teaching, so it’s all about that relationship that you form and how you can help each other out.

It’s a wonderful feeling to be able to talk and share experiences and grow and introduce people to each other. We’re in a situation now that we can jump on social media and share and grow with each other, and my goal is to be able to connect people.

Vicki: So all of this is just free and organic, and this is like your hobby.

Jody: It is. This is. It’s all happening outside of school… (laughs)…outside of my typical work day. I’m a special education teacher. I’m teaching, and I come home and I’m planning this. All my mentors are doing this totally on their own and on their free time. Of course all my mentees, the aspiring leaders have volunteered to do this, too, because they want to learn and they want to grow.

Vicki: Oh, it’s so exciting! I can see your face. Our listeners can only hear your voice.

What have you learned through this process?

Jody: I think the most important thing that I have learned is that there are so many people that want to give back and help the next generation. I think that is what has been so inspiring for me.

I keep saying this. I could give a shout out to so many people right now.

I’m part of a blogging tribe, and they’ve done so much for me. When you reach out to people and they say, “I’ll help you! What do you need?”

That’s huge.

People will volunteer to help you

Then when you think that this is all that they’re willing to grow. We’re no longer in this stagnant area that people say you know, you go to school, you get your license, you move on.

Mentorship is about helping other people, and I’ve really found that people are embracing that. They just love helping other people. That’s what inspires me, encourages me and motivates me to keep going. It just makes my heart happy! (laughs)

Vicki: Have you ever seen a mistake in a mentorship relationship that maybe doesn’t work out? What are the most common mistakes or problems that could cause it to not work out?

Jody: I think sometimes you have that. If you don’t have a good pairing with each other, that definitely could happen. In one of my pairings right now, it’s not a strong pairing.

I think you have to be able, as a mentee, to realize that it’s your job to learn from your mentor. But I think the mentor also — this is a learning experience for them as well — so the mentor necessarily has to embrace that they’re going to learn as well.

I think that’s the biggest thing. They both have to embrace the process. If both people aren’t embracing the process and the experience and the relationship, that’s where things start falling apart.

Both mentor and mentee have to embrace the learning process

It’s not a leadership, “I’m the one with the experience, you listen to me.” It’s an organic partnership of learning together.

Vicki: So about how much time a week does it take when you have a successful pair?

Jody: I think it’s not about time. I think it’s just that you consistently know that you have that person that you can reach out to. You can text. You can Vox. You can Skype. You can Google Hangout. You can write a letter.

I’m maybe in contact with some of my mentors maybe once or twice a week, because I know if I have a question, I can send them a quick question and they’ll answer me right away.

I think that if you find that person that you have a good relationship with, it’s not necessarily someone that you sit down with and have a 30-minute conversation with. It’s a, “I trust you. What’s your opinion on this? OK,” and you have that.

What’s neat about this program that I’ve made is that it’s all virtual. These people might not ever see their mentors face to face, but they have that connection. They have that time that they can sit down and ask true questions, where they might not be able to do if you’re hooked up with a mentor in your building. You might not be able to ask as freely about questions that you might have.

Vicki: OK, educators, so we’ve given us another way to build our PLN, virtual mentoring.

This is a great example of virtual mentoring for emerging leaders, just something that people are doing on the side to help. It’s organic, and I guess you could say viral, in some ways. It’s just pretty much word of mouth.

Check the Shownotes if you’re interested in this particular program or finding out more from Jody about how you can start your own. I think that in today’s modern era we need to find creative ways to connect and learn from one another.

Contact us about the show: http://www.coolcatteacher.com/contact/

Transcribed by Kymberli Mulford kymberlimulford@gmail.com

Bio as submitted


Jodie Pierpoint is and aspiring school leader has a strong passion for helping others. Jodie has been an educator for 18 years serving as a special education teacher (at both the high school and elementary levels) and as a high school senior counselor. During her career, Jodie created and organized Ohio’s first Special Education based EdCamp (@SpEdCampOH) and has presented several professional learning opportunities for educators including Ohio Education Technology Conference (OETC) and several EdCamps. Jodie has created a nationwide virtual mentoring program for aspiring school leaders that in its first year had over 25 participants.

Building relationships and online resources has become something that Jodie utilizes and shares regularly. She has created a website to share resources to help educators at www.SparkEdServices.com. Additionally, she is part of the #compelledtribe blogging community at https://jodiepierpoint.blogspot.com. Jodie holds graduate degrees in school administration & school counseling from The Ohio State University and a bachelor’s degree in elementary education (special education specialization) from Muskingum University. Jodie resides outside of Columbus, Ohio.

Blog: www.SparkEdServices.com

Twitter: @jodiepierpoint

Disclosure of Material Connection: This is a “sponsored podcast episode.” The company who sponsored it compensated me via cash payment, gift, or something else of value to include a reference to their product. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I believe will be good for my readers and are from companies I can recommend. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” This company has no impact on the editorial content of the show.

The post Virtual Mentorship for Emerging Leaders appeared first on Cool Cat Teacher Blog by Vicki Davis @coolcatteacher helping educators be excellent every day. Meow!


from Cool Cat Teacher BlogCool Cat Teacher Blog http://www.coolcatteacher.com/e243/

The Authenticity of Vulnerability

Day 26 of 80 Days of Excellence

From the Cool Cat Teacher Blog by Vicki Davis

Follow @coolcatteacher on Twitter

The greatest battles are often in the brain just behind a person’s eyes. For that is where we try to mask the emotions and the vulnerability we feel when we finally admit to ourselves that things aren’t OK.

vulnerability

After reading the book, The Deeper Life, I was challenged by the author Daniel Henderson to write my personal theology statement. And one of my own goals is to

“live transparently before the God who knows my every thought.”

But people aren’t God. They don’t read minds. So, we have to COMMUNICATE.

People Don’t Read Minds (And You Can’t Either)

I opened up to someone today about something and they said,

“I had no idea you ever needed anything. You seem like you have everything together all the time.”

Well, I don’t.

I’m hurting. I’m having a hard time in some areas in my life right now. There are things I can’t and won’t talk about on social media. But just because I don’t spill my guts to all those “friends” who really aren’t my friends, doesn’t mean that the hurt isn’t there.

I bet you most of reading this post probably have problems you don’t share on social media either.

Oh Lord, It’s Hard to Be Vulnerable

But it is hard to be vulnerable. And truthfully, not everyone deserves to know your weaknesses.

It takes time to establish trust. It takes time to find trustworthy people.

But if you never open up and tell anyone that sometime is wrong, how are they supposed to know?

If you act like you’re perfect all the time, who is going to trust you?

If you don’t put yourself out there you won’t be hurt. You’ll never cry over the betrayal of a friend. You’ll never have your heart broken.

But you’ll also never cry when a friend has their first granddaughter. You’ll never feel your heart swell with pride as someone overcomes a struggle you’ve helped them through.

Vulnerability is hard and yet it is necessary to build trusting relationships.

  • Are you willing to be vulnerable?
  • Are you willing to admit that you’re not perfect?
  • Do you need to have a conversation with someone and open up about something difficult you’re experiencing or a past mistake that might help a friend with a present problem?

Perfect is a lie. The sooner you stop pretending, the sooner you can be refreshingly human and perhaps move to a deeper level of friendship and intimacy with some important people in your life.

This post is day 26 of 80 days of excellence. I’ve created an email list below for those of you want to be emailed the full posts written as part of this series.

 

The post The Authenticity of Vulnerability appeared first on Cool Cat Teacher Blog by Vicki Davis @coolcatteacher helping educators be excellent every day. Meow!


from Cool Cat Teacher BlogCool Cat Teacher Blog http://www.coolcatteacher.com/vulnerability/

Effective Digital Citizenship Education

Dr. Kristen Mattson on episode 242 of the 10-Minute Teacher Podcast

From the Cool Cat Teacher Blog by Vicki Davis

Follow @coolcatteacher on Twitter

Digital citizenship education doesn’t work in a lecture format. Dr. Kristen Mattson, author of Digital Citizenship in Action talks about how they’ve integrated digital citizenship into all of their courses at her school and how you can too.

Jennifer Gonzalez has released her 2018 Teachers Guide to Technology with over 200 education technology tools including tools for assessment, flipped learning, presentations, parent engagement, video engagement and more. Jennifer gives you a description in simple language, a screenshot of the tool in action and then a play button that takes you to a video about how the tool works. Learn more at coolcatteacher.com/guide

Listen Now

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Enhanced Transcript

Digital Citizenship that Works

Link to show: www.coolcatteacher/e242
Date: January 30, 2018

Vicki: Today we’re talking with Dr. Kristen Mattson @DrKMattson. She is a high school library media center director in Illinois and author of the book Digital Citizenship in Action published through ISTE.

So Kristen, in all of my years of blogging, we’ve been talking digital citizenship, but it still seems like so many people are just lecturing to kids about this topic.

Kristen: I think that lecture style of digital citizenship is what we see most frequently, and I think a lot of us are really kind of excited to move away from that, because we know that lecture isn’t the best way to teach kids. Yet we haven’t really talked about some other opportunities to do it in any other way.

In the book Digital Citizenship in Action, it really is encouraging teachers and students to stop thinking about digital citizenship as a list of personal responsibilities that we have as citizens, even though those personal responsibilities are really important.

Those are just sort of the stepping stones to what it means to be in digital relationships and in digital communities with lots of other people.

One thing that I really encourage teachers to do in the book is to actually really get into digital communities with their students, so that students can have an adult role model, have that mentor on the side as they begin navigating a world of a digital community.

Get into digital communities with your students

There are lots of ideas and tools in the book about how you can set up those digital spaces with your kids, show them, help them create norms for those spaces, practice all the things that we’re hoping will transfer outside of the classroom.

Vicki: So what kind of digital communities are you creating for your school?

Kristen: The teachers in my school come to me quite often looking for ideas and ways to engage with their kids online and also to engage with kids in other schools in other places of the country.

We use Google Classroom a lot. We use Padlet. We use Google Hangouts. We use Skype. All sorts of tools that can help us connect, not only with each other but with the other two high schools in our district and then with lots of professionals in the field as well.

A lot of my role is listening to those teachers and what their goals are curricularly but also what their goals are for digital citizenship and helping to match them with the tools that’s going to best fit their needs.

Vicki: So if a principal walked up to you and said, “Tell me your most exciting story about this approach and how it works,” what would you say?

Kristen: I think one of the things I’ve been most excited about this year is what’s happening in our government courses. All of our kids are required to take a government course before they graduate from high school. We talk about all sorts of things, from how to engage as a citizen in the United States to different laws and court cases that have an impact on them. I’ve worked very closely with the department chair for that group, and we’ve really woven in a whole other level of citizenship that talks about what it means to be a citizen online.

An exciting example: privacy and security

So let me give you a quick example. We had students always talking about privacy versus security. We all know that we have a right to privacy , but we also know that the government has the right to invade our privacy if it’s in the best interest to keep the public secure.

Our kids used to talk about their lockers as being sort of a private space in the school. But the principal has the right to search through their locker if it is suspected that the child has brought a weapon or a drug into the school. Sp that’s always the kind of conversation we’ve had with kids about privacy and security.

This year we kind of ramped it up a whole other level. We started talking about privacy and security in digital spaces.

Our kids had some really fantastic conversations about how much people outside of our digital communities should be able to have an influence over what happens inside of our digital space. They had some great points to make about how much employers, or government, or colleges should be able to sort of dictate what they’re doing while they’re in community with their friends.

They also talked about the role of tech companies as censors or not as censors, so it was really cool to see how they were able to apply some of the things that we’ve traditionally always talked about in government class, and taken it into this digital space where they spend a good portion of their time.

Vicki: Where were they having these conversations? In class or online?

Kristen: These were all happening in the government classroom, sort of as an extension of that curriculum that they traditionally go through.

Vicki: How interesting. So they were having a face-to-face conversation about the digital space.

Having a face-to-face conversation about the digital space

Kristen: Yes.

Vicki: Interesting. Did you do anything to document that? I guess you’re kind of moving between your blended and digital space classrooms pretty seamlessly at your school?

Kristen: We are. The course that I was just talking about is actually one of our blended courses. It was a pilot course this year. We should have many more blended courses on the books next year.

It was cool because in this blended course, our kids are taking their coursework online. They’re using tools like Google Classroom and different things that I curate for the teacher and for the class. They’re able to come together in the classroom and have those really awesome conversations that happen while face to face, too.

Vicki: Excellent. So what are some of the cautions you have for schools as they tackle digital citizenship? Some things that maye don’t work…

What doesn’t work when you are teaching digital citizenship?

Kristen: I think the biggest thing that I have found just in my research is that digital citizenship is not very effective when it becomes, “one more thing.”

People that I’ve talked to, both kids and adults, feel that when it is just one more thing, teachers don’t feel very comfortable teaching it — because they may not have been trained, themselves, in what it means to be a good digital citizen, and so they’re not comfortable sharing that with other people.

Kids also feel like it’s very out of context of anything that they’re doing, so the more that we can weave it into the curriculum as it already stands and make it an extension of what we’re already doing, I have found to be very effective.

Our health classes are another place where we’re able to weave a lot of digital citizenship conversation in, and we talk about it a lot more from the personal perspective. We already had a unit in place about healthy relationships, but we never talked about the digital component of that.

You and I both know that a lot of our kids relationships — a lot of our relationships — are happening online. So we were able to take that unit of study, break it apart, and weave in areas where we can talk to kids about healthy and unhealthy relationships and the influence of technology on both of those things.

So the more that we can make it a part of what we’re already doing, the better off we are and the better off our kids are, too.

Vicki: It sounds like you have really helped infuse digital citizenship into all the courses at your school. How are you doing that?

Kristen: I wish I could say, “all”… (laughs)… I wish I could say all the courses. It’s definitely a work in progress. How did they do it, is that what you were going to ask?

Vicki: Yes.

How do you infuse digital citizenship into all courses?

Kristen: I think it’s really — first and foremost — looking for those followers that are excited about the topic, that are already using technology in their classrooms, that are already volunteering for these new initiatives in our district — like the blended learning opportunities.

Just sitting down and having a relationship with those teachers allows me to say, “Hey, let’s take a look at your curriculum. Let’s see where there are some opportunities,” and then truly being a partner in helping create that content, deliver the lesson, reflect with the teacher after the fact.

I really see my role as the school librarian as being that instructional partner who can come alongside and help make that happen, versus just sort of giving it as a directive, which is unfortunately sometimes happens in schools.

Vicki: And digital citizenship is something that concerns all of us in all of our examples.

I love these examples of digital citizenship not just belonging to one teacher — “OK, it’s your job to teach it.” — but actually having it in many different topics, because our students live in the physical world, but the digital world is also part of their physical world.

So digital citizenship is for all of us in all subjects to understand and to integrate. I think you’ll find students will be more engaged and more excited because this is the world in which they live.

Kristen: Oh, I agree 100%.

It can even be done in the elementary curriculum

I’ve been working a little bit with some folks in the elementary world, which is a stretch for me. I was a middle school teacher prior to this. But we’re even looking at some of the things we talk about in terms of community and careers.

When we think about the traditional curriculum — like, “Who are the people in your neighborhood?” — and we talk about the firemen and the police and all those other roles that people in our communities take — we can also take a look at “Who are the people in our online neighborhood? Who are the people that we connect with and see when we are visiting thes online spaces? What sort of jobs are available that help develop and keep these online communities running?”

This is the same way we look at jobs that keep our physical communities running.

Instead of having it be, again, one separate thing, if we can look at what we’re already doing and extend it into that digital realm, we can talk about what it means to be a human being and a citizen, both in physical spaces and in online spaces simultaneously.

Vicki: OK teachers. So her name is Dr. Kristen Mattson. We’ll have the book giveaway and also her full bio in the Shownotes. So check it out!

Contact us about the show: http://www.coolcatteacher.com/contact/

Transcribed by Kymberli Mulford kymberlimulford@gmail.com

Bio as submitted


Kristen Mattson, Ed.D., is a high school library media center director in Aurora, Illinois. As part of a Future Ready school district and a member of the Future Ready Librarians leadership team, she enjoys supporting others in her field by presenting at conferences, facilitating professional development sessions, and blogging.

Kristen received her doctoral degree from Northern Illinois University after conducting a critical discourse analysis of digital citizenship curriculum. Her new book, “Digital Citizenship in Action: Empowering Students to Engage in Online Communities” (ISTE, 2017) is a practical guide to teaching digital citizenship that is grounded in her research.

Blog: DrKMattson.com

Twitter: @DrKMattson

Disclosure of Material Connection: This is a “sponsored podcast episode.” The company who sponsored it compensated me via cash payment, gift, or something else of value to include a reference to their product. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I believe will be good for my readers and are from companies I can recommend. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” This company has no impact on the editorial content of the show.

The post Effective Digital Citizenship Education appeared first on Cool Cat Teacher Blog by Vicki Davis @coolcatteacher helping educators be excellent every day. Meow!


from Cool Cat Teacher BlogCool Cat Teacher Blog http://www.coolcatteacher.com/e242/

When Lonely Leadership is the Price of Excellence

Day 25 of 80 Days of Excellence

From the Cool Cat Teacher Blog by Vicki Davis

Follow @coolcatteacher on Twitter

After writing about mountain climbing last week, I began wondering when climbing mountains might not be a good idea. So, Kip and I watched the movie Everest over the weekend. Now, I warn you, if you want to see the movie, don’t read further as it contains some spoilers.

lonely leadership

The Deadly 1996 Everest Expedition that Killed 12 People

So, the movie Everest is about a disaster on Mount Everest on May 10-11, 1996. The expedition leader was Rob Hall, the man who had climbed Mt. Everest more at that time than any non-Sherpa mountaineer.

After seeing the movie, Kip and I have spent most of the weekend discussing leadership failures and what we can learn from this disaster to apply to our lives. Here are some of our thoughts.

Not following our own safety rules. 

Expedition leader Rob Hall had made a hard rule that he called the “2 o’clock window.”

For a crew to safely make it down from Mt. Everest, they had to leave and hit the summit before 2 pm so they could turn around and make it down safely.

When you’re the veteran and you know the safety rules, you’ll have to stand firm with the amateurs

Undependable essential task leaders.

Admittedly, the expedition made it up Everest later than planned, mainly because the sherpas had not set the ropes to ascend up “the Hillary Step” portion of the climb.

When key people don’t come through, reassess the situation and timing. Appoint dependable people for essential tasks.

Too many people were trying to make the climb. 

There were an excessive number of climbers on the mountain that day, so there was also a bottleneck. The guides refused to work together, and everyone insisted on attempting to make the climb at the same time.

Understand the impact of others trying to do the same thing. Sometimes we have to change our timing because others won’t change theirs.

A refusal to look at reality. 

Some climbers turned back, but most did not. Rob Hall’s first group was very close to the 2 pm window, and then after he started leading them down, he went back up.

Realistic assessments help keep the team on track.

Not saying no. 

So, on the way down, around 3 pm, Rob encountered postman Doug Hansen who refused to go back down. This was his third time attempting the summit and Doug did not want to go back without having climbed it.

You see, Doug Hansen had a good reason for wanting to get to the top — he promised a group of school children that he’d plant their flag there. He didn’t want to disappoint them.

Rob wouldn’t leave him and ascended back up with him to the top. That was the single mistake that may have killed everyone.

When the Goal of One Can Destroy Everyone

Would all of the others have died if Rob Hall had not stayed with Doug Hansen?

Doug’s goal of making the school children happy cost him his life and the life of two other men and possibly the lives of many others down below who didn’t have Rob’s leadership to get them off the mountain.

I know we want to keep our promises to the children, but sometimes the mission of preserving the team is more important than a specific achievement.

Some people in your organization have individual goals. That is fine. However, when a person’s private intent threatens the group, you have to say no to the individual’s dream for the good of the group.

Compromise Can Kill the Dream and People

While hindsight is 20/20, throughout the tragedy, we see Rob Hall, the man in charge – the leader – compromising. People refused to go down. One was snowblind and just waited. Others refused to go back down because they hadn’t made it to the top. Still, others refused to cooperate with each other. Finally, some people who they counted on didn’t come through to do their jobs.

Making People Happy Can Kill You

And I was struck with one significant thought: making people happy can kill you.

When you’re a leader in charge of a team, it can also kill your team and the organization you love.

People who refuse to make hard decisions hurt everyone, even if they make someone happy temporarily.

All of these climbers thought climbing to the top of Everest would make them happy. It didn’t.

It made them dead.

They got their wish. Many of those who insisted on reaching the peak are still there at the top of Mt. Everest, frozen solid, wind blowing their hair.

They got to the top and they paid for it with everything they had. They achieved a goal but didn’t live the dream.

Leadership in a Crisis

Lee Cockerell, 10 year Executive VP of Walt Disney World Resorts says about leaders,

“Your role is to do what has to be done, when it has to be done, in the way it shold be done, whether you like it or not and whether they like it or not…”

John Maxwell in Leadership Practices in Times of Crisis says,

“In every age, there comes a time when a leader must come forward to meet the needs of the hour. Therefore, there is no potential leader who does not have the opportunity to make a positive difference in society. Tragically, there are times when a leader does not rise to the hour.”

Michael Catt, the pastor of Sherwood Baptist Church (and my pastor), said in his sermon series on leadership, Not on My Watch,

“If you prune, people are going to resist you. If you don’t prune, they won’t respect you.” (March 8, 2015)

4 Reasons for Loneliness in Leadership

Pastor Michael Catt goes on to talk about four reasons for loneliness in leadership:

  1. Sight – When you see something before others see it.

  2. Sense – When you sense something before others sense it.

  3. Act – When you do something before others are willing to do it.

  4. Fall – When you count on someone, and they don’t come through.

You see, leadership is lonely. But leadership is important.

And when leaders who SEE and SENSE danger aren’t willing to ACT before others are willing to do it — they FALL. They fail those following them by refusing to lead.

Rob Hall by all accounts was a great mountain climber. And certainly, as Hollywood does, there may have been some poetic license with his character.

However, the bottom line was that he was unwilling to make people do what they did not want to do. He was reluctant to disappoint people.

And nice got him killed.

Sometimes we leaders must recognize and know when a worthy goal is being pursued at the wrong time and the wrong place in a way that is detrimental to the mission as a whole.

Leadership is lonely.

Leadership can be very unpopular.

And the price of genuine excellence is sometimes being perceived as a quitter when, in reality, you’re saving people from a mission gone awry. Or even more, we’re saving the organization from one person with a personal mission that can cost us the whole organization.

  • Are there missions you are pursuing that need to be abandoned?
  • Are there things you need to do for your team that are unpopular but necessary?
  • Are you willing to be the lonely leader?
This post is day 25 of 80 days of excellence. I’ve created an email list below for those of you want to be emailed the full posts written as part of this series.

The post When Lonely Leadership is the Price of Excellence appeared first on Cool Cat Teacher Blog by Vicki Davis @coolcatteacher helping educators be excellent every day. Meow!


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