Gone Are the Days of the Lone Ranger

By Rod Berg  |  May 9th

School leadership has become complex over the years, and it is hard to imagine the days when the leader of a school did it all alone. One person cannot see all the angles. The truth is, we were not wired to function alone, we are hardwired to live in community.

No Egos Win the Day

Top-level teams function without egos. They keep their eyes on the prize and don’t get bent out of shape if one idea does not fly. Nor do they care whose idea it was! Top quality teams have each other’s backs and aim for vision, while constantly improving. They get beyond themselves and truly love the big picture of pushing their school to new and exciting levels. 


One of the false thoughts a leader must drop early in their career is thinking you must know it all. You don’t and you can’t possibly know every answer to every situation. As leaders, we need to let this idea go early or we will hit a ceiling in our leadership. When a leader functions with a team in a healthy way, there is no glass ceiling in growth, vision, or ability to hit new heights. You suddenly are the combined gifts of your team, not a collection of individuals.

Room for the Holy Spirit to Work

Think of it another way… When a team is functioning at a high level and there is a sense that all ideas are potentially good ideas and egos are kept at bay, the Holy Spirit has a chance to work, shine through and nudge any member of the team. We would like to think that the leader is open, flexible, and leaning into the nudging of the Spirit. But what if the leader is single focussed and not leaning in…or…yikes…wrong? A team that is healthy allows the Spirit to nudge any member of an administrative team and get an idea on the table, which moves the organization to a whole new level.  At times it only takes one idea…and a leader can miss it.

In Closing

What to do if you are a smaller school and there are no funds for an official admin team? Create your own!  Honestly, if there is no room for an official one, create one. Schools need teams without egos who can lean in and solve the high-level challenges we face these days in education. The days of the Lone Ranger are gone! Yes, you need someone with the heart, passion and calling to run a school…but leaders don’t ride alone!

I have learned I don’t always have the answers. But I do know that I can walk into any of our administrative team meetings with confidence that we will get to the other side of whatever we are dealing with. That swagger comes from the whole of the parts.

Rod Berg is the North Toronto Cohort Leader for Edvance, and is Principal at Timothy Christian School in Barrie, Ontario.