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Thinking about applying for a new leadership position but not feeling so sure that you want to leave your present position? Maybe you’ve developed some great friends and you’re not sure if you will make good friends in your next position. Or maybe you feel positive about your current position, you’re in control, you know what’s expected of you and you can manage it all. Or maybe you don’t feel you have all the leadership skills required to bring change and innovation to a 21st century school and feel the need to enrol in a principal training center or school leadership program before you even apply.

Well, here’s the thing. If you stay in the same place doing the same thing there’s a pretty good chance you will stop growing.

Human ambition is all about growing, developing and discovering how we can be our best so that we can help others become their best too, don’t you agree? So why don’t you change your thinking and give it a go.

Here are 5 HOT TIPS to get you started.


  1. Stretch yourself

Make a decision to take on additional responsibilities in your current role without being asked. Not only will you learn more but this is a great way to demonstrate your work ethic, energy, creativity and skills. It sets you up to be noticed for internal promotions or to ensure you have good reference material for external promotional positions.


  1. Empower others

You know it’s the 21st century and with leadership schools and principals institutes available, opportunities and possibilities abound. Mentor and coach others to pilot innovations in your current position. Teaching others is a critical leadership skill and one that is sure to impress those above you. Taking responsibility to problem solve and trial innovation will highlight your skills and potential to others, a sure way to be noticed for leadership advancement or even school leadership programs that will help prepare you.


  1. Emotional Intelligence EQ is a game-changer

You can’t lead anyone if you can’t lead yourself. Getting to know yourself really well and learning how to understand and lead others is paramount to successful leadership. I’ve been reading Daniel Goleman and Travis Bradberry’s work for years. Developing your EQ and emotional self-control takes time and effort. Make sure you focus on developing the four competencies of self-awareness, self-management, social awareness and relationship management to be a competent, wise and switched-on leader in all situations.


  1. Align yourself to the school’s vision and mission

Whether you decide to apply for an internal or external position make sure you do your homework and really dig in deep to learn about the school’s mission, vision and philosophy. Warning. If you do not agree with the school’s mission and vision DO NOT apply for a position at that school. It will be a really bad fit for you and the school. Search out schools with a mission and vision that match your personal values and educational philosophy. Leading in a school where you believe in the mission and vision means you will give your heart and soul to do a great job, our kids deserve no less and this will create success for you, your school and your students.


  1. Be Fearless

Go for it! Start searching for internal and external leadership positions now. Update your CV. Think about three highly respected referees you can ask to speak on your behalf. Ask them to write a reference for you. Make an appointment to meet with your Principal or Head of School and tell her/him you’re ready to look for leadership positions. Yes it’s the 21st century and you just never know when something creative and innovative may come up. Putting yourself out there will make sure your Head of School/Principal is aware of your willingness to grow and develop. You  don’t need a school district leader certification to start the process and you just never know, s/he may have something to offer you right now or in a year or two. If you never step out, you’ll never know.


If you feel like you need more help why don’t you come along to my next Leadership for the 21st Century workshop in March? I’ll help you identify your strengths and weaknesses as a leader and show you how to disrupt, innovate and bring change to your school to really meet the needs of 21st century learners. Find out more about it here.


The date doesn’t work for you? Then check out my new online leadership course here. You can take it anywhere and anytime.


Looking forward to hearing all about your amazing leadership journey.

    Download our "Top 3 Challenges Facing School Leaders today" whitepaper and learn how to overcome them.