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  • Writer's pictureDr. Lisa Gonzales

Four Questions (part 3 of 4)

Leading from the heart can be better navigated with four questions that highlight trust and empathy, understanding and compassion. Each of these questions should be viewed from the perspective of our staff and how we reflect on how they respond can strengthen personal reflection:

  • Can I help you?

  • How can I care for you?

  • Can you trust me?

  • How can you help me?

Can you trust me?

Alas, the age old question. Trust is an essential leadership skill, and can make or break us. For those leaders who have entered into a new role where trust was lacking, reestablishing it isn’t a quick, simple task. Leaders have to work significantly harder to establish relationships, build new foundations of trust, focus on the needs of students, and work through landmines that come up along the way as a result of the history of the situation at a site or in a district.

Milpitas Unified Interim Superintendent Cheryl Jordan builds trust through frequently touching base with site and district colleagues. “When we allow the communication gap to widen, we fill in our own misconceptions and anxiety. Instead of building trust, we fortify our defenses.” She models management my movement with her team, visiting sites and fostering greater communication and trust.

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