Is there a 2.0 version of leadership?

Gordon Dahlby, West Des Moines Community SD with Larry Anderson
Monday, 6/25/2007, 8:30am–9:30am; GWCC B208

Today’s leaders must invest in self and their staff and students. We’ll share habits and resources for leadership development highlighting opportunities that new technologies provide.

I didn’t get a whole lot out of this one. There were some interesting points and some good quotes but it wasn’t quite the concrete session I was looking for. I’d like to see someone doing kind of a walk through which takes me through a progression of building leadership through technology. Kind of like – we started w/ blogs to enable blah blah and then were able to move on to wikis which added this, that and the other. Or you could approach it through aspects of leadership and what technologies would best support each aspect and why.

One of the key points I though was worth focusing on was that leaders create other leaders. It’s all about pulling up the whole group. I don’t think we do too much of that, with intention, in education. I’m not sure I do enough of that. I might end up helping too much rather than building competency. It’s hard to walk that line.

There was a pretty good interview with a google employee that pretty much described the opposite of a school system. I’ll see if I can’t find the link to it. It was worth hearing but a little long for this format.

Larry Anderson was funny. He seems like an interesting guy but his part was pretty minor in terms of time.

Here are few more major points with my own comments in italics.

  • ideas come from everywhere
    expect everyone to contribute- seems like in schools too often it’s a few key people who do most of everything, maybe we’re not getting at everyone’s talents in the right way

  • share everything you can
    information is power
    credit for ideas is not paramount to the individual – see a lot of that with edtech bloggers
  • you’re brilliant we’re hiring
    working with a lot of smart people
    spend time with the “varsity” – might be fun/useful to bring lead tech teachers up to work with ITRT for periods of time. we’d be creating leaders, adding to their knowledge and in a way offering a reward, not that I think we’re all that, but giving subs etc. and doing something interesting with them would be worth while and a way of honoring them
  • a license to pursue dreams
    this is often harder in schools as mistakes and rules can crush a lot of dreams through simple fear
  • innovation not instant perfection
    mistakes with technology can often be disastrous for the program or your career- not how it should be but true

  • data is apolitical
    -but it can certainly be presented in a slanted way or gathered that way

  • creativity loves constraint
    I agree but it might be harder to get things rolling with lots of restraints
  • users, not money
    if you build it they will come
    if you build something useful people will come but keep in mind things are competitive- time and interest are getting scarce

  • don’t kill projects morph them
    I liked this idea. Keep things rolling, evaluate the good things, why it was worth starting and then build/modify off that.

conference, lost, necc2007, necc07, n07s686

3 thoughts on “Is there a 2.0 version of leadership?

  1. In two bullet points
    “# a license to pursue dreams
    this is often harder in schools as mistakes and rules can crush a lot of dreams through simple fear
    # innovation not instant perfection
    mistakes with technology can often be disastrous for the program or your career- not how it should be but true.”

    the writer expresses the value of mistakes and bemoans the penalties they exact. I would like to use mistakes in useful ways in my teaching in part to encourage students to take that extra step that could lead to faster improvement of their language use (I am an English language teacher). How can we in education make mistakes both valuable and hopefully not often repeated, i.e., new mistakes have value but the same one over and over indicates a problem.

  2. I’m looking at this more from a technology and teacher oriented standpoint rather than students although I think some of the ideas are the same.

    I think it’s pretty valid to expect to be able to experiment with technologies in the pursuit of better learning without having to fear losing your job if a student uses them incorrectly. A lot of teachers live in fear and won’t try new things because of this. Like you said, mistakes happen, it’s learning and growing from them that matter. So it makes sense to see the value of mistakes and think that the penalties for making them (in reasonable numbers) ought not to be so harsh.

    The key is learning from them and making them learning opportunities for both students and teachers. That’s usually much harder if it’s one strike and your out.


  3. John,

    I think you are talking about problem solving, which (I believe) is considered a 21 Cent. skill. We often limit the development of problem solving to science and math, which is unfortunate. When I was teaching English, I tried to create an environment in my classroom that allowed for mistakes. There were two keys that made it successful: One, I let my mistakes go public. Two, I was intolerant of ridicule between students. It took some work, but my classes all realized that it was ok to make a mistake because it wasn’t the end of the conversation or “work”. The end came when the correction had been made and the difference between the perceived answer and the correct answer was brought to light. In the end, we are trying to pass this skill on to our students, so they are prepared to take on these challenges when we are no longer around to guide them.


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