Best Practice

Calm leadership: Optimism during challenging times

At times as a school leader, optimism can be hard to find and yet an attitude of optimism is a key tenet of effective leadership. Patrick Cozier continues his series on how to be a calm school leader

“Perpetual optimism is a force multiplier. I am talking about a gung-ho attitude that says ‘we can change things here, we can achieve awesome goals, we can be the best’.”
American statesman Colin Powell

 

It was 2010 and I was in my fourth year of headship. My then school business manager popped his head into my office: “Patrick, have you got a few minutes? I need to tell you something.”

By the look on his face and his solemn tone, I knew it was not good news. I remember having that tight knot in the pit of my stomach. He proceeded to inform me that despite our previous calculations, he had done the maths again and was projecting a near £500,000 deficit. I did not see it coming. I was devastated.

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