Leadership -The end of term & lollipop moments

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It’s nearly the end of term.  Mixed in with the euphoria of finishing and looking forward to the summer break is the moment of looking back and reflecting on what has been.

The TED clip below tells story tells of a young women uncertainly going to register at university.  She is just about to decide to leave when Drew turns up – do have a listen to what happens next – he calls it a lollipop moment.  Part of Drew’s message is that we make leadership bigger than it is and bigger than ourselves.  Leadership becomes about changing the World rather than taking the next step and taking people with you.  We may even devalue the everyday impact we have on people and their lives or our ability to influence them.  Remember we all lead in our own way, in our classrooms as well as our staff rooms. This is a story for everyone who works in a school or a life involving service to others.

The Impact of What We Say & Do

You will never know the number of lollipop moments you create in a year.  I was at a conference a number of years ago when a teacher, approaching retirement, shared a story that she must have been carrying with her for fifty years.  When she was little, the school used to have special celebration days.  On those days children would dress up in their best clothes and have a party.  As she entered the class room in her best clothes, her teacher said, “What a beautiful dress.  Isn’t it a pity your mum didn’t iron it for you.”

Her sense of being crushed was palpable.  A highly intelligent and articulate women had carried that throw away remark with her for half a century.  A bit like Drew, I doubt the teacher would even remember saying it.  I would actually hazard a guess that the teacher had given thought to the “beautiful dress” part of the comment and not registered the lack of ironing part.

This year as middle leaders at HWCS you will have impacted on more young people’s lives, in more ways than you will ever appreciate.  You will have touched their lives for the better.  They have probably not come back and thanked you.  That is why you haven’t realised the number of lollipop moments you created this year.  Like Drew you may find out in the years to come.  Then again you may not.  Thank you anyway.

Enjoy the summer break ahead, then come back and create more lollipop moments.


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