This is a blog about hidden leadership and all the things school leaders do behind the scenes.
What leadership do you do behind the scenes that is important, yet unrecognised?
“The most challenging facets of school leadership are unknown quantities.”
Have you ever had to deal with a situation were you felt unequipped? For example, dealing with the media, conducting an interview, leading staff speeches at the end of term, or a bog-standard staff briefing on a Tuesday morning?
When signing up to become a school leader, many features are often unexamined because the most challenging facets are unknown quantities. Managing a difficult conversation, conducting disciplinaries and keeping energy levels up for more than 12 hours for the fourth day in a row as there is nobody else to do it, can sometimes become be a regular occurrence.
These are the aspects of school leadership that I call hidden leadership; the sort of leadership and management that takes place behind the scenes and requires long hours with no obvious or immediate impact. There is not much said about good leadership that is unseen; about the difficult conversations behind closed doors; the pat on the back after a colleague has gone above and beyond; the kinds of things that happen all the time but are not celebrated.
There are many hidden leaders within school. They can sometimes be hard to see, but here’s how you can potentially identify them.
This is my second published feature for @SchoolsWeek, a weekly newspaper covering all schools. Schools Week is a printed and online weekly newspaper covering the schools sector in England; aimed at those with a broad interest in education policy and finance, typically aspiring, middle/senior managers, leaders and governors across all schools. You can subscribe here to read articles first!