Iron sharpens iron

I am sitting in the back seat of a hire car travelling to Chicago from Indiana as I write this blog and thinking about why this Leadership Tour I am on is so important for me as a school leader.

The school and university visits have been enlightening as our team of Christian school leaders has explored Christian education at the primary, secondary and tertiary levels in the U.S. The upcoming Global Leadership Summit at the end of the week will also be a tremendous time of learning from well renowned global leaders.

As we drive (and I write) I am regularly interrupted by the conversation from the other school leaders I am travelling with. These are in depth conversations about the challenges of leadership and individual experiences. We encourage each other, share wisdom and support one another in our respective roles. It reminds me of the scripture in Proverbs 27:17 which says: “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”

This is vital for us as leaders.

An isolated leader is almost always an unhealthy leader. These leaders are at the risk of becoming stale, have higher stress levels and often burn out. An uneducated or untrained leader is equally at risk.

At Cedars we place a high value on leadership development.

Our College Board have sent me to this Global Leadership Summit with that in mind.  I have also recently sent some of our leaders to the Christian Schools Australia National Leaders Summit giving other staff the opportunity to continue developing their leadership skills as they take up acting leadership roles at the College.  A leadership coach will also be working with our staff this month helping focus on healthy leadership practices.

None of these leadership activities are being done in isolation. As iron sharpens iron we learn and grow together. This goes for our students as well.

Term 3 is the final term for our current College Captains as they prepare for their HSC and the time when our current Year 11 Leaders apply for next year’s Captaincy. These roles are also carried out as a team. Our Year 11 Leaders have worked together as a unit all year and have learned a lot from the outgoing Captains.

Current College CaptainsYear 11 Leaders

Throughout the year our current Captains have met together with Captains from other Christian schools to unpack their experiences, learn from one another and to encourage each other as they move into the future.

In a country where leaders are often cut back down to size (ie the tall poppy syndrome) it is exciting for me to know that at Cedars we do the opposite. We build each other up, we develop our leadership skills through study, through experience and in a community of leaders that want the best for each other.