I am no expert on managerial or leadership styles. Of course I have read quite a bit, had considerable experience but I have more to learn and while ever I am in leadership, I will learn more. Without doubt, there are many elements to effective leadership and few would argue that schools are complex eco systems to lead. Thus, there are many commentators with real insight and vision who are worth listening to: John Tomsett, Caroline Fishpool, Jon Andrews, Eric Sheninger, to name a few.
With the amount of opinion and afore mentioned complexity, the range of advice as to what are the most important/most effective areas for leaders to focus on is broad. From my perspective though, inclusiveness and empowerment are vital components. In the same way as I have advocated, perhaps a little too loudly, for the student voice to become action (see NOT Voice), ensuring the Principal’s open door policy is more than a token gesture cannot be undervalued.
The ‘corridor of power’ exists in many schools and I love the work of John Goh to disrupt that. Yet, for a leader to come into an organisation and make an immediate impact or for all staff to truly feel they have the power to positively influence the school they work in, the elements of inclusiveness and empowerment are the key. I think this diagram provides a visual representation of my views in this area: