There are two qualities that I believe are under-rated and often get unnoticed or not discussed when you think of top qualities of principals. Decisiveness and being proactive are two qualities that should be on your top 10 list.
Being decisive is just as important as high expectations, organization and being a problem solver. These three I just mentioned are probably the most discussed in interviews or when you think of a good principal. However, let’s not forget about being decisive. If it takes a principal two hours to make a decision regarding “every day operations of a campus,” there is a problem. Making decisions quickly is key. Certainly there are times when you need to weigh all the options but for the most part be quick on your feet and make a decision when asked. It saves you and your staff valuable time. This time could be well spent on instruction, student achievement or other important situations. Don’t hold your team up because you don’t want to make the call on something.
I could discuss being proactive all day long. I think this may be what sets a good principal a part from a great principal. Look ahead. Plan. If you can see a disaster coming, make a move to change it before it happens. Don’t wait until something happens on campus to react. This pertains to everything- schedules, discipline, staff morale, parent situations, instruction, student achievement, and the list goes on and on. You get the picture. If you have trouble focusing on the “what-ifs,” being proactive might be difficult for you. Always play it out in your head and see what road blocks you may encounter and plan accordingly.
Let’s all put decisiveness and being proactive at the top lists. They shouldn’t be under-rated. They are very important in the overall daily operations of a school.
What do you think?