Want to lead people so they want you to lead them again? To take initiative effectively?
Many people ask counterproductive questions, like “How should I do X?”, “How do I convince someone to do Y?”, or “What do I need to know to become a leader?”
The most effective question is “How do I learn to lead?“, or in entrepreneurship and taking initiative, “How do I learn to take initiative?“
Leadership doesn’t come from knowing more information or facts, nor from a one-time action, nor from convincing people.
It comes from practice. By focusing on how to learn to lead, I help people become leaders. You have to practice. It takes time, not quick tricks, but it works.
I focus on becoming the best teacher and coach to change people. I’m inspired by active, experiential, project-based learning, which barely exists in universities, but is big in K-12. I’ve worked with some of the biggest names in education, like Ken Robinson, Chris Lehmann, Tony Wagner, Peter Gray, and more.
Here are the episode notes:
Welcome to the Better Leaders Better Schools podcast. This is a weekly show for ruckus makers â€” What is a ruckus maker? A leader who has found freedom from the status quo. A leader looking to escape the old routine. A leader who never, ever gives up.
A lot of school leaders feel frustrated with the red tape and bureaucracy while doing their jobs as educators.
In this episode, we talk with a man who might be able to offer a solutionâ€¦without leaving your â€œthis is stressing me outâ€ job.
Dr. Spodek, a TED speaker and holder of 5 Ivy League degrees, offers advice on how to take initiative in the workplace so you can feel better and make a stronger impact as an educator.
Key Talking Points
- Rafaelâ€™s story of finding meaning as a burnt-out educator
- The small mental pivot that increases collaboration and support in the workplace
- The huge barriers that keep most people from taking initiative
- Why everyone has the power to create more meaning in the workplace
- The importance of â€œspeaking their languageâ€ when talking with management
- The difference between judgement and advice
- Joanaâ€™s story of achieving something amazing by following a simple script
Key Milestones of the Episodes
[5:40] Feeling stuck and story of Rafael
[7:50] Helping Rafael through the gridlock
[11:38] Why itâ€™s more important to have the right skills than â€œknow the right peopleâ€
[16:52] How does Dr. Spodekâ€™s ideas about initiative apply to school leaders
[20:21] Creating change you believe in with management
[25:00] One practical exercise listeners can make to be a stronger leader
[29:00] The story of Joanne
â€œItâ€™s a real big deal to jump ship.â€
â€œThereâ€™s opportunities all over the place.â€
â€œTaking initiative doesnâ€™t have to mean â€˜entrepreneurshipâ€™.â€
â€œWhat gets media attention tends to be the more high-tech stuff.â€
â€œHaving a perfect idea keeps some people from starting but motivates other people to goâ€¦â€â€¦
â€œâ€¦something like 5 or 10% of people are naturally going to come up through their natural life to have an idea, what about the other 90-95%â€
â€œItâ€™s easier to succeed at something you donâ€™t like when people are paying you for itâ€¦but it doesnâ€™t necessarily create meaning.â€
â€œMost people are working below their potential, not in terms of output..but in terms of alignment.â€
â€œâ€¦when the teacher gives you an assignment to read a book that you always wanted to read anyway, it doesnâ€™t feel like workâ€
Donâ€™t forget to catch more episodes and resources at the Better Leaders Better Schools website.