... LESSONS IN LEADERSHIP
responsibility to let people know when
you appreciate them and their hard
work and when you don’t. Leaders
must help those who follow grow. It is
disingenuous to allow an unproductive
employee to remain when you know
that person is not able to effectively
carry out his or her responsibilities.
You must be honest with the employee.
That doesn’t necessarily mean you must
fire that person. It could mean providing professional development opportunities; it could mean a transfer to
another unit or another organization.
Ultimately, however, it means that you
have to do something for the rest of the
organization not to begin to crumble.
Finding ways to reward and discipline
those you lead is paramount to their
success as well as that of the organization you are leading.
bring others around to your way of
thinking without patience. As leaders,
we must provide opportunities for others
to learn and grow into effective roles,
and that takes time. Instead of growing
impatient with them, take pleasure in
and responsibility for their growth.
Being a leader isn’t all glory! It is hard
work, headaches, and sleepless nights.
But it is also glorious and exciting to
watch an organization grow because of
your ideas, support, tenacity, endur-
ance, and assistance. Work hard to
climb that leadership ladder and look
forward to the opportunities and chal-
lenges that await when you reach the
top! Good luck.
BELLE WHEELAN is president of the
Southern Association of Colleges and
Schools Commission on Colleges and
AACC’s 2012 Leadership Award Winner.
Doctorate in Community
Developing leaders who will strategically guide
mission-driven, 21st-century community colleges
Influence. In my position as secretary of
education for the commonwealth of
Virginia, I had but three direct reports.
I was tasked with working with all
college presidents, museum directors,
the state’s librarian, and the state superintendent of instruction, though none
of them reported directly to me.
Though I had been influential in
making changes within other organizations, this marked the first time in my
career where I was expected to effect
change absent the authority to personally demand it. I became much more
aware of the need to have my facts in
order before I tried to secure agreements. And I learned that titles don’t
always translate into power and authority. I also learned that sometimes
planting seeds for ideas and providing
support influences others to act and
allows you as a leader to feel successful
through them. I have a friend who has a
saying: “Just because you have power
doesn’t mean you have to use it.”
The Ferris doctoral program was created for leaders of mission-driven,
21st-century community colleges. Application based and taught by academic
faculty in partnership with community college leaders, this doctoral program
is relevant to the changing environments in education. Courses examine
issues community college leaders address from an interdisciplinary
perspective. As individuals advance in an organization, their perspectives
and knowledge must be broader. Course emphases include teaching and
learning, policy development, leadership strategies, resource development,
marketing, finance, facilities, and technology.
Find us at AACC booth 828 or visit:
Patience. Of all of the lessons I have
had to learn as a leader, patience has
been the most difficult. When I want
something, I want it right then, not
later. I have learned it is impossible to