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Fast tracking educational leaders: what works and why Annette Beard & Peter Earley


Why do we need provision for accelerated leadership?

– The needs of the system – The needs of the school – The needs of the individual 2

Question: To those people who might say this isn’t necessary or desirable, what would you say?


CHARACTERISTICS OF FAST TRACKERS/HIGH POTENTIAL  Value some independence & self-responsibility  High commitment/high energy  A need for creativity and variety  A varying interest in teamwork  Seek continual improvement/strive for excellence  Have strong work ethic/enjoy working hard  See work as a primary source of satisfaction  Have high levels of organisational commitment  Believe time and energy can be stretched if managed well 4

CHARACTERISTICS OF FAST TRACKERS  Integrate new information to direct future activity  Adapt to new situations  Develop high levels of job specific knowledge  See new initiatives positively  Regard problems as opportunities  Take risks in their development and work  Respond to feedback  Have an orientation towards learning from others  Learn quickly and from mistakes  Are open to criticism 5


 Seek opportunities for career development  Value clear direction & values  Need room to reflect upon & capture their learning  Seek roles that allow them to be fulfilled  Need challenge & regular new tasks  Want to be dominant & have influence


Questions: Who should identify potential applicants and how? Methods to attract, identify & develop talent? 7

Questions: What is it that makes accelerated leadership development provision distinct from effective leadership development? How can we speed up the process?



Opportunities to build something from nothing or to fix things/turn them around

Networking within and across institutions Development/acceleration centres

Training leading to formal qualifications Temporary ‘acting’ posts Psychometric testing & 360 degree appraisal Leadership consultancy/secondments 9

ALD FEATURES & APPROACHES  Formal training with developmental assignments  Challenging, real projects & work-based assignments

 Coaching with real experiences  Role models and mentors  Ongoing and systematic mentoring  Serving on & facilitating committees/working groups  Role rotation

 Regular and constructive feedback


ALD FEATURES & APPROACHES  Leadership & management courses  Facilitated workshops

 Reflective writing and journals  Action learning sets  Role play and simulations  Individually-focused development opportunities  Supported personal development plans

 Blended/e-learning (personalisation)


Readings 

Earley, P and Jones, J (2010) Accelerated Leadership Development: fast-tracking school leaders, London: Institute of Education, Bedford Way series.

Fink, D (2010) The Succession Challenge, London: Sage NCSL (2009) Identify & Grow your own leaders: a practical guide & case studies


Fast tracking Peter Earley