"Get off administrator isolation island and build your tribe of education leaders throughout the State of Michigan. The practical leadership nuggets you gain during each weekend session will have you running into school on Monday morning!" -Jonathan Swegles, -Leadership Matters Cohort 5 and Cohort 10 Alumni
When I first started my principalship almost 25 years ago I was a know-it-all! I thought that after observing principals at the schools I served as a teacher and the master’s classes on leadership had prepared me to do the work. I was confident and thought I was going to change the way principals did their work! Like every first-year principal, it didn’t take me long to figure out that I didn’t know-it-all and I needed to change my mindset and become a learn-it-all!
Luckily, my district principals were members of MEMSPA and my learning journey began at my very first Annual Conference! I was also blessed to meet one of my mentors, Dr. Nancy Colflesh. She started what I like to call the first Leadership Matters course! We met on weekends and eventually continued our learning at her home on Saturdays in Haslett. I remember the very first session and how she was facilitating learning for us with anchor charts, protocols, and relevant learning that I could put to use the next day at school. I thought to myself, “That’s what I am supposed to be doing back at school!” My learning about the principalship and best practice never stopped.
How about you? You might be a know-it-all like I was, but I urge you to become a learn-it-all! It doesn’t matter if you are a first-year principal or have been a principal for 20 years. Feedback from every cohort of Leadership Matters, MEMSPA’s premiere professional learning experience for principals, consistently cites how this 10-month experience has changed lives both personally and professionally, supported leadership skill acquisition, and provided courage and intentionality as a principal leader. Consider this quote from recent alumni, “Leadership Matters provides participants a reflective and collaborative space so leaders can gain clarity on their own values, resources to improve their leadership skills, and actions to be more effective leaders.”
Each weekend session is focused on one of the five interwoven themes of either collaborative culture, courage and integrity, intentionality, reflection and/or coaching for improved performance. What many participants tell us is that each weekend is perfectly aligned to the school year and is exactly what they need to implement on Monday morning! A follow-up coaching call ensures that every participant receives the support they need! Consider this quote from alumni, “Leadership Matters reaffirms what we all know, LEADERSHIP really does MATTER. This course has helped me gain perspective and has allowed me to critically analyze what I am doing as a building leader. We can learn something on the weekend and immediately implement the following Monday. Extremely applicable strategies and thinking.”
Dr. Nancy Colflesh and Dr. Debbie McFalone co-wrote the Leadership Matters curriculum. It is focused on what I like to call, “What you didn’t learn in graduate school!” Content focused on how to build relational trust and collaboration, how to give effective feedback and build a culture that thrives, how to plan and hold difficult conversations, and how to plan effective meetings and professional learning just to name a few! Ten years of developing principal leadership in our state through MEMSPA! Several principals have taken Leadership Matters twice! Consider this quote from alumni, “Leadership Matters is THE best professional development that I have ever been a part of as it marriages theory/research with practicality and use in educational leadership.”
Oh Thank Heaven for Cohort 11! We have a brand new cohort that will begin this January! Want the perfect network of learners with two facilitators of learning that will support you on your leadership journey? Consider signing up today! Leadership Matters Cohort 11 Registration and Information
Probably best for you to hear it from these Leadership Matters alumni learn-it-alls!
- Leadership Matters was a phenomenal experience. I am 10x the principal now than when I started. I have gained a new family that I can go to when I need advice. All the learning is applicable and you get time to reflect which helps to improve your practice. I would recommend this program for any principal!
- Leadership Matters is the best thing you can do for your profession and for yourself!
- Leadership Matters is the best professional learning in which I've engaged for the past 25 years. This course is a must for all leaders.
- This series should be THE required administrative training program for all administrators.
- This experience not only changed my life as a leader but it changed my life as a person.
- Thank you, Debbie and Derek! Leadership Matters has been one of the richest learning experiences of my career. The content, connections, and coaching combined to inspire each of us to unleash our personal potential.