I am an avid listener of AM Sports Radio during the summer work-days. I like to turn on the ESPN Radio app on my iPad when arriving in my office, keeping the narration on throughout the day. As one show rolls onto the next, I typically get to hear various opinions on the same topics and stories.
Last week, the Jason Kidd hiring as Head Coach of the NBA's Brooklyn Nets was a hot-stove topic. The Nets received a lot of criticism for hiring a freshly-retired (and future Hall-of-Fame inductee) coach with absolutely zero head coaching experience. Those defending the hiring belief his on-court leadership will transition to head coaching. Yet, the majority of analysts voice disagreement, due largely to Kidd's lack of experience, especially with numerous other candidates having years of experience.
I am certainly grateful experience is not the only factor taken into account when searching for leadership positions.
There had to have been some candidates with much more experience, in terms of years of service, when I interviewed for my current Assistant Principal position a few years ago. Similarly, I know there were applicants with more experience when I was selected as the Dean of Students at my previous school.
I would like to think my skills as a school leader outweighed my youth and/or my lesser amount of experience.
In terms of experience and the evaluation of potential leaders, we must consider quality versus quantity. Some of the most effective and talented teachers, coaches, and school leaders are not necessarily the ones with the most experience.
While experience is one important component, it should not be the primary component when recruiting and selecting those for leadership positions. Is the individual able to make appropriate decisions in the best interest of the entire school? Does their knowledge help him or her put people in the best position(s) for the organization to grow? Will the leader take on tasks assigned to members of the organization? Does the individual demonstrate the value and importance of setting goals with a track-record of meeting them? Do they motivate others to improve?
The qualities revealed from questions similar to those above are more valued than merely years of service when it comes to leadership.
Jason Kidd's head coaching career may culminate after one season with a horrendous season and a quick termination; maybe his coaching career will be a smooth extension of his successful playing career.
The Brooklyn Nets organization place enough confidence in Kidd to serve as their leader for the conceivably the reasons previously mentioned, outweighing any tenured experience.
I'm thankful those who selected me to serve as an Assistant Principal followed suit.
Thanks for reading,
The opinions shared in this blog belong to Craig Smith and do not represent the school or district in which he works.