Section 4 deals with leading across. To me, this means leading other teachers while still a teacher. Because of my experiences in my building, there are three points that really stood out in this section, “Put Completing Fellow Leaders Ahead of Competing with Them,” “Be a Friend,” and “Let the Best Idea Win.” I really dislike competition. I was never an athlete, not matter how hard my parents tried. I prefer to lift others up and remain hidden. That is just a personality thing for me. I am not saying it is a better way of doing things, it is just how I work. However, Mr. Maxwell believes this is the best way to go about leading across. Thank goodness I already do that!
I am a non-confrontational person. I really dislike conflict, so being a friend to my colleagues works well for me. If someone needs a good listener or a helping hand, that is me. These actions build relationships with people. They go a very long way toward investing and being able to draw on that investment when you need it. Everything in this book points toward good leadership being a two way street, not so much a “scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours” as it is a “make a deposit, make a withdrawal” situation.
I have never been the type of person to think I have all of the good ideas. Occasionally, I do come up with a great idea, but usually that is the result of teamwork, not me as an individual. I only point this out because I freely admit others are capable (and do) come up with better ideas than I do. I firmly believe that as teachers, we need to buy-in to whatever the best idea is. The best idea is the one that benefits as many students in the most positive way. In education, if that focus is lost, we have lost. When teachers or administrators begin to put their personal agenda ahead of student learning, everyone will lose.