Be the Constant, Not the Variable

When Leadership Requires Stability

I have heard leaders described as agents of change. This drive to improve things is usually considered to be a strength, and I believe often is. Great wisdom is required to know when to shake things up and when to hold fast.
Via FromSandToGlass @ Flickr Creative Commons

Via FromSandToGlass @ Flickr Creative Commons

 I was reminded of this lesson while in the superintendent’s office one evening. The conference table was full, so I and the other administrators sat along the wall. A few of the board members were completing their terms and new ones would be replacing them at next month’s meeting.
As I considered which board members would be finishing their time of service that evening, several feelings were washing over me…
I felt very thankful for the ones who had been so supportive in the past couple of years. They had been voices of reason and reassurance during times of constant change in education.
I was eager, and admittedly a little nervous, to meet the new ones who would be replacing them the next month. As the superintendent publicly thanked them for their years of service, each took his/her turn to address us in the room. One particularly stood out to me.
He said, “When I was elected a board member years ago, I told myself that I wanted to be a member who was constant and dependable. Thankfully, I feel I was just that.”
What he said struck me deeply. He didn’t come onto the board with an agenda to change things. He felt that his roll was one of stability.
As a leader, he was greatly respected, constant, dependable, a voice of calm and reason during uncertain times. When he spoke, everyone listened. His questions and statements were always well thought out. As a result, we all felt confident in his ability. We trusted his motivations and always considered his opinion.
Question: Can your team say the same about you? Are you the rock they can depend on? Or are you constantly trying to change things, making them all uncomfortable and nervous?
Leave a comment and share a story about someone that has been a constant in your life. What did you see? How did he/she make you feel?

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