Leaders–It’s all about the context

Music Droid

Image by The Smurf. via Flickr

Being an authentic leader means being true to who you are in dynamic situations and with different audiences and scenarios.  In this excerpt of an interview with Dr. David Darnell, Department Chair and Associate Professor of Education Leadership at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa he talks about how his experiences as a leader differ when working with his graduate students, his colleagues at Drake and his work in his local church, as well as touching on his lifelong experiences in education.  The subject of this excerpt is how being a leader may change given different contexts and in working with different constituents.  His comment about remaining true to yourself while helping others get where they are going is particularly keen.


Context and Constituents

I have a particular affinity for his leadership style, as he was my high school band director several years ago and was instrumental in helping me become who I am, as well as encouraging me to “go for it” and enjoy a good career as a professional musician in the U.S. Navy Music program before launching into an entirely new direction (all part of my journey, nonetheless).  He taught me that when you’re excited about what you do, that covers a lot of “gaps” in a role or a job that you might otherwise find frustrating or overwhelming.

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