I thought at the beginning of my career as a leader that it was enough to give "orders" or tell people what to do - to make things happen! Over the years, I have become more and more aware of the fact that it's not much about what I say as a leader - it's all about what I do!
If I want things to happen, as a leader I need to "walk the talk", be a role model, set examples for others in the organization to follow. For example, if I would like to introduce something new that I myself have not previously tried - I would do it myself to show that it was important. Giving the message, "this is serious, we are actually implementing this in our organization!"
As a leader it would be easy to say "I'm not good at this" which would be removing myself from responsibility and leaving the implementation to someone else. There is nothing wrong in delegating (we should do even more) but there is something wrong with the equation if I'm not part of the change process and merely act as a spectator and expect others to do the job!
What experience do you have working with transformation?
Is it possible to develop and improve a business without the occurrence of unforeseen obstacles on the way? No matter how much strategic planning in my experience things will go wrong, unplanned and unforeseen events will occur and they are, naturally, a part of the change process!
As the saying goes "Failure is the first step to success!".
Now and again I heard that our process in Falkenberg was straight forward and rewarding - but did it go well the whole way .....? It was because we reflected and discussed what we encountered during the change work - this was an important part of our own learning process.
This has made me wonder how organization's think about change - probably many think they are moving from point A to point B - then everything is finished and everyone is satisfied - the change is accomplished! Or is it?
My conclusion is: based on what I know today - change requires the courage to make mistakes, to fail. This an important part of the learning process! We expect this to happen in the classroom - we need to have the same expectation at all level of the organization.
What's your experience?
All change requires persistence patience and a great deal of courage from leaders and also the faculty and staff. Digitization also demands the ability and willingness of each individual to change in a new way - as it involves incorporating technology in a familiar context. In this process, each leader and teacher etc becomes aware of their own part in learning new content and also which components can be practiced more efficiently and instructively with the help of technology. This is for far too many a huge transition.
In my previous work as a leader in major change processes with digitization, I have identified seven areas that are of great importance. These areas must be managed consciously and strategically in the change process:
How did you handle your change processes?
Sitting in a red armchair with Kristina Björn beside me - in another similar red armchair ... We are in Brastad in Bohuslän preparing for tomorrow's lectures - teachers' study day for employees at Campus Futura Tanumshede.
We are really looking forward to this day! I am leading two groups working with expectations and roles. Kristina leads the work of collegial learning and formative working methods.
Now the Autumn term 2017 is on it's way - which start! :-)
Summer is in full swing and I'm thinking about how to get started writing !? :-) Got thumbs up from the publisher to write a book about - change leadership associated with the digitization process - something I'm passionate about! The book will be more like a manual with concrete step-by-step examples to guide the reader through the change processes - from the leader's perspective. I have written parts and have an idea of how it will look like - but it's about getting the work into motion !!
Yes, yes - I'll take some vacation first .... but then !!
I'm obviously happy to have this opportunity - again!
Have a nice summer!
Headmaster Symposium for Eastern European Region, will be in Sofia - Bulgaria on 24th of November this year.
That was the opening sentence in my recent email, which gives me the opportunity to attend a school conference in Sofia in Bulgaria this November! I will lecture on change leadership and digitization for 250 principals from Bulgaria, Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Macedonia, the Czech Republic, Poland and Greece ... :) Wow !! So exciting!
I am so incredibly grateful for being part of this ...
Today we have listened to really good lectures at the Future of Learning - what a blast of energy! :)
I will remember Sir George's strategies about change management as well as Carl Heath's lecture on the digital society we live in today - it's not science fiction and futuristic anymore. In addition, I want to lift the participation of children from Härryda's schools and also discussions about digitization and school development from a political and trade perspective.
A good mix that gives many perspectives and increases the understanding of why schools needs to be digitized and change to meet the needs of today and in the future.
Have a great Tuesday!
Ps. The picture I took this morning is from Gleerup's stand - I'm very happy that my book was there!!.
It will be fun to attend Future of learning (Framtidens lärande) on 23-24 May - on Wednesday 24th of May I participate together with Lotta Persson from Gleerups in the program below.
Thoughts about school digitization
Equal school development requires a conscious strategy and clear leadership with a holistic perspective. The question of school digitization is complex with many angles of approach. Here we will take up thoughts about the digital development work and further ideas to take a stand and inspire.
Arja Holmstedt Svensson, Specialist in change work, former Managing Director, Lotta Persson, Process Manager Digital Development at Gleerups ..
Hope to see you!
Sitting on the bus on my way home from another assignment as a self-employed consultant – my thoughts are going back and forth, and I am trying to figure out what I am really thinking about ...
I am aware that I am thinking about myself - my own journey as a human being, but also as a leader. Most of my time is spent examining possibilities and solutions for often complex and difficult tasks. Many of the complexities and challenges I recognize from mine previous leadership assignments within the organizations where I had my formal management assignments.
Now I'm reflecting on the part I play in of these processes with others ... The power of joint effort and collaboration is something that I alone can never create! Once again, I acknowledge to myself that I am a leader who is given the mandate to lead because of my dedication and interest in educational issues. Because of this I get to work with the most important people in school development - teachers and students together with their principal!
I, myself cannot create development - collaboration with the others is what gives the power and the drive forward!
So grateful that I may be a part of others' joy in succeeding!
"It feels like we moved a step forward and a little closer to each other .." said one of the teachers who attended the meeting with the students at the school I have been working with. We had a joint meeting where we discussed increasing pupils' participation and influence at school to reach further in our development process.
This first meeting with the students is a continuation of project I am involved in. The entire staff estimated their own efforts and labor with "Check Your School"- tool. Together we chose three areas to focus on - pupil participation and influence is one of them..
We had planned to start the meeting with a short film about participation and influence published by the Swedish National Agency for Education. It was the start that led us to discussions about the school's own current situation and how students and teachers together can find ways to increase participation and influence - from a democratic perspective and also from the student's own learning.
Before we parted, we all agreed that meeting was a success! We plan to continue the process with follow-up meetings to discuss student and teacher participation next school year.
Have a nice weekend!
Arja Holmstedt Svensson
A blog about my work and assignments as a Change Leader. The posts will be about my experiences – new experiences, meeting new people in new environments.