Good to Great: Chapter 2

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Response to Mark's Question and His Reply to My Question

Post by Denise Scallan on Sat Nov 05, 2016 3:33 pm

Mark, I too recognize that some "extremely kind and caring" people would have problems "doing some things that would go against his or her nature", as Level 5 leaders sometimes have to do. I think that explains why not everyone, including myself, is able to be a leader on that level. That doesn't mean that we can't continue to strive for that level of leadership. Based on the students who have transferred to me from you and on working with you throughout the years, I believe you are extremely close to a Level 5 leader.

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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by SWallace on Sun Nov 06, 2016 2:14 am

Response to Carol's Question:
I believe you are correct instating that Level 5 Leadership is built like a pyramid; however, as tue author stated "you do not have to move in sequence from Level 1 to Level 5 - it might be possiblle to fill insome of the lower levels later." A level 5 Leader "embodies all 5 layers of the pyramid."
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by SWallace on Sun Nov 06, 2016 2:26 am

Response to April's Question:
I love the analogy that Alan Wurtzel made regarding he was a "plow horse" rather than a "show horse." Unfortunately, I have been in many situations where my "leader" tended to be more of a show horses, it seems like the higher in management you go, the more Show Horses there seem to be. They also tend to foolw that whole "look in the mirror" attitude where everything is focused on them until something goes wrong. I have also had the opportunity to work with some tru "plow horse" leaders and although the work may be tough and demanding at times; they are right in there with the rest of us, strong, steady, and dependable.
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by SWallace on Sun Nov 06, 2016 2:39 am


Response to Mark and April's comments:
I agree with the author that potential Level 5 leaders exist all around us, if we just know what to look for. I also believe that many people have the potential to evolve into Level 5. The author also goes on to explain that based on his research, one should begin by practicing the good-to-great disciplines we are discussing in this forum/book study. These ideas can be put into practice in lots of areas of our life, not just our careers.
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The fact that the majority of the Level 5 leaders that they encountered, (10 of the 11), came from within rather than outside the company. Many times we are surrounded by those who if not already Lwevel 5 Leaders are on their way, they only need to work on "evolving" those characteristics that enable them to move from Good to Great!
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by SWallace on Sun Nov 06, 2016 2:49 am

Response to Denise: Do I consider myself to be a Level 5 Leader? In a short answer, "No." BUT .... do I feel I "have the seed within" to become a Level 5 Leader, then I would empathically answer yes. But, I know that I have a lot of hard work to do in working on growing that seed, watering that seed, and then yes, eventually "harvesting" that seed. Smile
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by SWallace on Sun Nov 06, 2016 3:01 am

Response to Kenya:
Kenya, i really struggled with answering this question.. in fact, started to take the "easy" way out because I had already responded to my quota of "5 respones" lol. But, I kept coming back to what you said, "what matrixes do we utilize when deciding to cut the hand off to save the whole body. Is there a point where we realize that a student just isn't going to get it or do we keep going." I think many times we are faced with a client or situation, where we feel that all that can be done has been done and it is time to call it what it is and move on. In fact, I have been feeling this way myself over a client of mine. However, the more I think about it, and I was reminded of what Denise said at our last PLC, that she feels like a mother or grandmother to these young offenders... I put myself in that position and ask myself "if this were my child, would I wnat someone to quit or give up on him?" I know that's not exactly what you are asking, but it is where my mind went... I don't think as a True Educator we can make those types of decisiions, to just stop educating them because they are not getting it.... if that is the case, then maybe I need to revise my response to the question ... Can I be a Level 5 leader ????
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Response to April

Post by CAnderson on Mon Nov 07, 2016 3:20 pm

April, I have met quite a few of both types of horses, I guess.  A show horse seems to crave the spotlight and works toward achieving the spotlight.  The plow horse just goes straight ahead with "blinders" on--their eyes on the prize of achieving their goal.  I feel that there are also different levels of plow horses.  I have worked for a plow horse who did not or rarely allowed you to have a say and another who provides you the opportunity to be heard.  I don't want to be to specific, as I have only worked for one company.
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Response t Denise

Post by CAnderson on Mon Nov 07, 2016 3:31 pm

Denise, I don't think I'm quite the level 5 leader at this time. I may have been one in a different location and a different situation.  I'm not sure if I'm building "enduring greatness" at this time.  I would like to think my students are capable of going out building productive lives, based on the things that we are trying to do.  I believe I still have the seed within.  Although if I were a level 5 leader, I'd be too humble to tell you.
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Response to Kenya

Post by CAnderson on Mon Nov 07, 2016 3:39 pm

Kenya, I never want to give up on a student or students, in general. When working at the mental health facility, I dealt with a different type of student than I currently encounter at the forensic/correctional facility. There was never a thought to "cut the hand off" . I believe that all students can learn--just not the same thing or at the same rate. At the forensic facility, there are students who may be able to read only 10 words and 10 numbers at he pre-kindergarten level. We should not stop trying to work with them. We have to try to make them the best versions of themselves.
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by CAnderson on Mon Nov 07, 2016 3:45 pm

Mark, I agree with what you said about the plow horses.  I've been around a lot of different types of teachers.  Some were show horses, who were concerned about the way things looked and the way they were perceived.  They weren't concerned about the plowing but wanted the crops to look good--particularly once or twice a year.
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by wojames on Mon Nov 07, 2016 6:03 pm

The author describes a group of people - a large group that have the potential to evolve to level 5; however their capabilities have been ignored or buried - but reside within them nonetheless. Under the right circumstances they begin to evolve. Please list/explain instances where either you or your students have fallen into this category.
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by wojames on Mon Nov 07, 2016 6:23 pm

Denise,
As teachers in our setting(s), we are Level 5 leaders. Not only are we working to develop our students academically - through gaining a HiSET, but with their overall development - socially and emotionally. There are many lessons that I teach my students that will not be tested on the TABE or HiSET; however, these are lessons that will assist them with everyday living skills - both in prison and after they are released. Our goal is to help the students to develop into a better student/person overall.
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by wojames on Mon Nov 07, 2016 6:37 pm

April,
I have worked with/for both show and plow horses. My preference would be to work for a plow horse. I have found that plow horses are team players, as well as leaders, and don't mind getting their hands dirty to get the job done. They don't just make decisions and give directions, but are willing and ready to work to the very end to get a task completed and don't glorify themselves for good results - but the team. On the other hand a show horse is only concerned with positive results end and self glorification.
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by wojames on Mon Nov 07, 2016 6:45 pm

Mark,
I agree with your statement on never giving up on a student. I recently enrolled a student whose TABE scores are very low and realistically he may never pass the HiSET; however, I can see him evolve as he learns to compute math problems (and other skills) that he can take and apply to his daily living activities.
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by wojames on Mon Nov 07, 2016 7:14 pm

Carol,
I agree with  your statement that some people are just natural born leaders and others have to acquire skills and knowledge.  It is my belief that because natural born have an innate characteristic  to become a leader he/she will evolve to a Level 5 leader before those that will acquire the skills and knowledge. It's like some people are naturally athletic, artistic, and the skills only have to be refined and polished rather than taught.
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by wojames on Mon Nov 07, 2016 7:32 pm

Kenya,
I've had to struggle with how to make this decision many times in the past and I'm sure that it will continuously arise.  For as long as I've been teaching there have been times when I was straddled the fence, so to speak, when deciding what to do.  I read and really agreed with Saundra's response as to what would I do if it were my child or grandchild - would I want someone to give up on him or would I want someone to keep pressing on in hopes that he would catch a little spark and that spark would later ignite to a flame.  I have always chosen to keep going; knowing that the student may not reach the moon but that he/she might fall somewhere amongst the stars.
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by Klittles on Thu Nov 10, 2016 4:11 am

To Mark's Question:

Mark a level 5 leader can possess both. It is almost like yin and yang where they display personal humility and professional will. The leader will demonstrates a compelling modesty, shunning public adulation; never boastful while he/she acts with quiet, calm determination; relies principally on inspired standards, not inspiring charisma, to motivate others. The level 5 leader channels ambition into the organization, not the self; sets up successors for even more greatness in the next generation. He or she looks in the mirror, not out the window, to take responsibility for poor results, never blaming other people, external factors, or bad luck. Always pushing for success but never at the cost of others.
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by Klittles on Thu Nov 10, 2016 4:47 am

To Saundra's Question:

The level 5 leader:
Look out the window and give credit to those responsible for positive outcomes by making sure those around them know that they recognize their contributions and understand how significant they are to the success of the company.
Looks in the mirror and take ownership for anything that has gone wrong. If it is believed that the entire team falls short, then the leader will address this in straight-forward way to everyone. If it is an individual’s responsibilities that were not meet then there is a direct conversation with the individual. People need and want to know when they have failed to meet expectations, but they must also be able to trust the leader to be fair, communicate openly and honestly, and have their best interest in mind.
Understanding luck says that everyone experiences some sort of luck. Luck is something that you did not plan for but it happens. However, it is the response to the luck event that most significantly shapes the outcome.
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by Klittles on Thu Nov 10, 2016 4:57 am

To Carol's Question:

Carol, in the book on page 21, it states that a leader does not need to move in sequence from level 1 to level 5 and people may develop some of the lower levels as they develop However, a fully developed Level 5 leader embodies all layers of the pyramid. Experience during the journey to level 5 will bring out different aspects of the pyramid in an individual. Therefore, your statement that they build on one another would be simply speculative.
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by Klittles on Thu Nov 10, 2016 5:27 am

To April's Question:

I have worked with both show horses and plow horses. I would rather work with a work horse any time over a show horse. I found show horses to be people with very little integrity who are willing to throw people under the bus to be recognized and noticed. The show horse is consistent, humble and dedicated and most times even when the show horse is taking credit for something the the work horse has accomplished, the work horse stays in the shadow. I look at this an I say that even though folk only see the door, the hinges are the most important part. The hinges stabilize the door, allowing it to use for its purpose.
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by Klittles on Thu Nov 10, 2016 5:52 am

To Denise's Question:
I believe that I am a level 5 leader. I am not sure if I have adequately shown all level 5 characteristics while performing my job as regional coordinator. This would be question best answered by you. But, I can say unequivocally, that while serving as a sergeant in the U.S Army, all these attributes were present. Collins states the Level 5 characteristics as:

One with self-confident enough to set up their successors for success (wants to develop teacher leaders )
One who is humble and modest.
One who has "unwavering resolve." (pushes and never gives up)
One who displays a "workmanlike diligence - more plow horse than show horse."
One who gives credit to others for their success and take full responsibility for poor results. They "attribute much of their success to 'good luck' rather than personal greatness."
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by Klittles on Thu Nov 10, 2016 6:04 am

To Kenya's Question:

I have heard it over and over again from plenty of teachers: that some kids can’t be reached. But we have to choose to believe that there is always hope. Even if there seems to be no hope, there is always need for hope. You can accept the reality that not every kid will be reached. But, you do not accept abandoning the effort in trying. You have to say in the back of your head that every child needs a champion, every quitter needs a coach, and every failure needs a fresh start. The easiest thing to do is to quit, but quitting is not your job. Your job is to try to influence every mind that enters your classroom. Every day. Every student. Every second.
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by Klittles on Thu Nov 10, 2016 6:16 am

To Wanda's Question:

I guess the best example, I could give here would be my first year of teaching.
I think because I was older when I came into teaching and I already had children who were teenagers, my experience as a first year teacher was a lot different then most. I had my experiences as a mother and 12 years of military behind me. One day while I was on duty at school, the principal ask me to come to his office once my duty was over. My response was, yes sir. I went to his office and he said to me, " I see so much potential in you as a leader and I am going to start grooming you to be a leader here at this school." So, I guess that leader trait was hidden in but was able to be seen by those who were looking. And with his guidance and my experiences along the way, I believe I have evolved in to a very effective leader. I think what helped me to evolve into the leader that I am were 5 attributes:
1. Integrity
2. transparency and accountable
3. consistency, approachable and fair
4. ability to solve-problems (good listening skills)
5. Tough when I need to be

So my questions is, " Have you seen this attributes in me?"
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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by Kenya.Huggins on Thu Nov 10, 2016 2:08 pm

MShamburger wrote:Here is my question:
Level 5 leadership, as defined by the author, consists of  "an unwavering resolve to do whatever must be done to produce the best long-term results, no matter how difficult" combined with a "compelling modesty, shunning public adulation; never boastful." It seems to me that these two characteristics are at odds. All of the humble, modest people that I know are also extremely kind and caring. I think the "unwavering resolve" would require the level 5 leader to do some things that would go against his or her nature. How can the attributes of level 5 leadership be reconciled together into a single individual?
I think when the author keeps repeating "humble", this classifies everything. I think all too often, we as a people get a little excited as to small success that occurs and tend to stop there. Ultimately missing the entire boat of the overall success that we can experience. In fact, I think this is the entire premise of the book, going from good to great and not settling for being meritocracy. I'm not sure if the CEO's of Wal-Mart have read this book, but they adopt this same philosophy. No matter how good they do, they constantly strive for more, and they are never impressed with minor gains.

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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

Post by Kenya.Huggins on Thu Nov 10, 2016 2:10 pm

CAnderson wrote:Kenya, I never want to give up on a student or students, in general.  When working at the mental health facility, I dealt with a different type of student than I currently encounter at the forensic/correctional facility.  There was never a thought to "cut the hand off" .  I believe that all students can learn--just not the same thing or at the same rate.  At the forensic facility, there are students who may be able to read only 10 words and 10 numbers at he pre-kindergarten level.  We should not stop trying to work with them.  We have to try to make them the best versions of themselves.
I like that Carol. You're a true giver!!!!

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Re: Good to Great: Chapter 2

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