Ignite the Passions of Those We Lead: #NPC Reflections

Dear Education Colleagues:

As I write this on the plane back home to MinnesOta from Boston, I reflect on my time spent at the National Principal’s Conference. It was my first time attending this conference and while it is sponsored by the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP), there were many Middle School and Elementary principals in attendance as well. To say the least, this conference was phenomenal!!

The conference’s main message – to ignite the passions of those we lead – was loud and clear at the #NPC19 conference. Teachers, principals, superintendents, school board members, all education colleagues…WE are called to ignite! We are called to dare to lead! (Yes indeed, I also read the book Dare to Lead by Brené Brown while in Boston and on the flights). We are called to lead with love, empathy, passion, kindness, and we hold the key to unlock the potential of those we serve! Think of the HUGE impact we have on education.

I had the pleasure of meeting many PIRATES while there…those who have authored a book through Dave Burgess Consulting, Inc. These folks are about as real as you can get. Sincere, honest, transparent, kind, witty, and LOVE what they do! I’ll admit I was a little intimidated by them at first because of how famous they are 😉, but then I remembered what Brené Brown was told while she nervously waited to give her first TED talk about vulnerability… “remember they are just people. People, people, people!” Yes, indeed, and you folks are MY kind of people. Thank you for all you do!!

Blog Nili_Jay

Leaders (and we are all leaders), we are called to be courageous, brave, kind, empathetic, honest, authentic, passionate, and real…we are called to believe we ARE champions for those we lead.

#NPC19 was full of treasures! Below are a few of my golden nuggets from my trip to Boston and the National Principal Conference:

Arrived in Boston at the same time as Middle School Principal, Jessica Cabeen, from Austin, MN and author of Balance Like a PIRATE: Going Beyond Work-Life Balance to Ignite Passion and Thrive as an Educator. She even footed the bill for our Lyft ride to the hotel. THANK YOU, Jessica!!

Blog JessicaMe

Jessica, along with Jay Billy, author of Lead with Culture: What Really Matters in our Schools; Nili Bartley, author of Lead Beyond Your Title: Creating Change in School From Any Role; and Beth Houf, author of Lead Like a PIRATE: Make School Amazing for Your Students and Staff, shared with us about the importance of a Professional Learning Network (PLN). In addition, Jessica and Beth along with Sanée Bell, author of Be Excellent on Purpose: Intentional Strategies for Impactful Leadership, shared their stories about being middle school principals and the extras it takes to manage those tweens.

Phenomenal sessions with Jimmy Casas, author of Culturize: Every Student. Every Day. Whatever it takes. He reminded us to reflect on our practice every single day, to never forget our why, model best practices, and to live our excellence. Jimmy and Jeff Zoul shared what NOT to do in our schools. Read their book, Stop. Right. Now.: 39 Stops to Making Schools Better to discover the rest of those not so good practices!

Blog Jimmy Casas

George Couros was our first keynote speaker. Top notch!! He received a standing ovation!! Mr. Couros, author of The Innovator’s Mindset: Empower Learning, Unleash Talent, and Lead a Culture of Creativity, had us laughing and crying and we could all relate to his message. He challenged us to embrace the awesomeness of people, technology, and to make a difference!

Jay Billy and I then had the honor and pleasure of presenting our session, NURTURE Others to Be Their Best, on Saturday, the last day of the conference at 8:00 a.m. We weren’t sure if we’d have anyone show up because of the time it was being offered. Oh my stars…it was a packed house and we had a great time. 😍 Thank you to all who attended and blessed us with your presence.

The last session I attended was presented by Jessica Cabeen and co-author of Balance Like a Pirate, Sarah Johnson. These two young ladies shared how to find joy and balance in our crazy lives. The TED talk below by Shawn Achor was one of my favorite resources from their advice. Give it twelve minutes of your time and you will laugh out loud and feel better. 🙂

Thank you, #NPC19. This conference was exactly the medicine I needed!! I am reignited and on fire for this upcoming school year. The perfect prescription for all of us. If your fire is almost snuffed out, go to a conference! It’ll be the perfect antidote to your “burn out!”

God bless ALL.OF.YOU! Thanks again. 🙌🏼

Stay Calm & Ignite your Passion!
Profs Dr. Wendy. & Dr. V.





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