This week we held our first-ever combined Leadership Induction Service. Even though the change was brought on by current restrictions, it was such a great whole College event that it may well become one of our new traditions.
Student leaders and their families attended the ceremony in the spacious GPAC theatre where they could all physically distance themselves. The rest of the College and families at home watched the whole thing via live stream. Normally we have a separate leadership induction for Primary, Middle and Senior School but this time everyone could join in and celebrate our new leaders together.
This year my speech focussed on three marks of a good leader. Even though leaders come in all different shapes and sizes and they have different abilities and talents, there are three things they have in common.
The three marks of a good leader are:
- A good leader has a servant heart
- A good leader has a courageous heart
- A good leader has a true heart
A good leader has a servant heart
Sometimes when you hear the phrase “a servant heart”, you may think a good leader is meant to be everyone’s butler and wait on them hand and foot but that is not what it means.
A servant-hearted leader is a leader who is focused on others. They are thinking about how they can help others become the best that they can be. It was heartening to read this as a goal of many of our leaders when they introduced themselves on our social media platforms.
Our 2022 leaders already have servant hearts and great goals. Even if it means more work for them, they are already focused on the well-being of others.
A servant-hearted leader says, “what can I do for the good of others”. Who can I be for the good of others?
The opposite to that is, “what can I do for the good of me” and “how can I make myself look good, how can I make my life better, how can I become more popular, what do I need right now”.
When you look at a good leader and you look at a bad leader you see this difference all the time. Good leaders are focused on others and not themselves.
So to be a good leader you need to have a servant heart.
A good leader has a courageous heart
A good leader needs to be bold, brave and courageous.
Without courage, a leader won’t try and change things even if it is for the best. They are afraid that people may not like the change and therefore they might be seen as unpopular. A leader who is not courageous will allow themselves to be swayed by peer pressure. Peer pressure is wanting to fit in with your friends and peers so much that you are willing to change what you believe in, the values you hold, the promises you keep and even who you are. Leaders who are not courageous do not stand up for what they know to be right and true for fear that they will be rejected by their friends and peers. They are afraid to set the right example and to follow the rules in case the rest of the group judges them as uncool.
A good leader needs to be above this and demonstrate courage. They need to be brave. They need to boldly put forth their vision for what the College could be even in the face of judgement.
Courage is feeling fear but doing the right thing anyway. There is nothing wrong with being fearful but what is wrong is when a leader is so fearful they don’t make decisions or try to change things for the better. We want all of our GCC leaders to be courageous.
A good leader has a true heart
Having a true heart is saying what you mean and meaning what you say. A bad leader says one thing and then does the opposite. We have a word for these people and they are called hypocrites.
There is another good saying that I know everyone has heard of and that is, “your actions speak louder than your words” and that is so true. If someone says they are your good friend but then talks about you behind your back and is mean to you then clearly they are not a good friend, it doesn’t matter what their words said their actions said something completely different.
In order for our 2022 leaders to be effective, they will need to gain the trust of the students they lead. The way they do that is by being trustworthy. You can only gain people’s trust when you are trustworthy yourself. A good leader says what they mean and means what they say.
It is a great honour and privilege to lead people. At our Leadership Induction, our students promised to be good leaders and I can see that they are already on the path to encompassing our core values and being G.R.E.A.T.
I am excited by what this year holds and I am excited by what you as the student leaders of 2022 have in store for our wonderful College.
Mike Curtis, Principal
GCC families can see all the photos on Pixevety in the following albums: