Become a Leader Others Want to Follow

Today I reflect on Principal Principles and leadership.
It’s been eight years since I started this blog. I reflect on how I never realized how sharing a day in a school leader’s life would help me become better as a leader. As a result of me getting better, those around me are stronger educators too. I also never dreamed of how a hobby of blogging transformed into a business and a brand. Even writing the words – business and brand- are still hard to acknowledge many years later.
This week, I sat in a conference room with some new friends who will join the Principal Principles team and help me fulfill my dreams as a leader. I finally had the courage to seek some help with my business. As you all know, I am a current school leader working a full-time job in an East Texas school district. I wake very early in the mornings to take care of the business and jump back on after school hours. It is tough to manage. So I stepped out and removed the lid I have placed on myself to seek some extra hands.  
Many of you have been with me since day one.  I still remember creating the Principal Principles Facebook Page in 2013 with just my family and friends as followers.  A year later, Principal Principles Leadership Group was opened.  The group now has over 47,000 friends networking, collaborating, and sharing everything from morale boosters, school events, and how to land an interview in leadership.   It continues to grow at a rapid pace, and I love collaborating with friends all over the world. 
A little push in your leadership can have a ripple effect with others all around the world.  That is my why I do what I do.  

No one ever achieved greatness by playing it safe. 

As a leader what does it take to become a leader others want to follow?   


Step one is realizing that you are a leader and then change the things you do and how you think. The same things that we have always done will not work forever and ever. Think like a leader. When things are going well, and student success is rising, look up to see who you can praise and reward. When things aren’t going so well, determine how to communicate more clearly and ask yourself what we could do better next time which will result in a more favorable outcome.  

We must first focus on change within ourselves to create the possibility of change in others.


Your school will move in the direction of your leadership.  Think about that for a minute.  Strong leaders invest in themselves.  The greatest gift you can give yourself is also the wisest investment you could ever make.  Growing as a leader is a process.  It is so well worth it because then you can influence others to lead too.  


Be the leader that inspires others to take action.  You are accountable for the influence you have in the school’s culture.  As leaders we must look at ourselves first and reflect on the contributions we make to the school.  To inspire others you must first believe in yourself. 

People follow leaders with a heart faster than leaders simply because of their title. 


Nothing irritates your campus/district staff more than constant change.  When I say change, I am referring to your behavior, your schedules, your systems, etc…  What we do consistently inspires those to follow you.  Why? Because when things are are consistent you know what’s expected and what’s ahead.  Surprises aren’t always a good thing.
If this post has made you a better leader, you can help share it on social media.  Thank you for sharing!  If you needing some training in leadership, I have an online course that thousands of other principals and school leaders have taken.  Join the Principal Principles Leadership Course today and get 24 hour access.  
Stephanie McConnell

Stephanie McConnell

I’m Stephanie, and I’m the face behind Principal Principles. I’m a former principal turned educational consultant, presenter, and edupreneur. I’m obsessed with giving school leaders the tools they need to lead a successful school.

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Hi, I'm Stephanie

Hello friend! Welcome to Principal Principles. I’m Stephanie, and I’m the face behind Principal Principles. I’m a former principal turned educational consultant, presenter, and edupreneur. I’m obsessed with giving school leaders the tools they need to lead a successful school.


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