In response to the post, “Sometimes You Have to Move,” a reader writes:

“I agree with your post. I wonder if districts sometimes fail to promote such outstanding individuals because they don’t want to “lose” that person in their current position. Perhaps, this person is the real reason his current school is so successful, and the district fears his removal would cause the school harm.

In the district’s mind, the fear of losing this person as an AP outweighs the benefits of putting this person as a principal. I also wonder if the district may feel intimidated having someone of such capabilities in a higher position of leadership. Perhaps this person may pose a “threat” to the status quo if promoted to principal. Anyway, I wish this person the best of luck, especially in a new district.”

SC Response
The issues that you bring up do effect hiring and promotion decisions on occasion; along with a myriad of other factors. It is easy to develop a case of paranoia when you keep getting passed over. However, the three largest mitigating factors are:

1. There are generally more candidates who meet the qualifications of the position, than there are positions.

2. The organization does not owe anyone a promotion, no matter how long your tenure or how “loyal” you are.

3. It is easy for the organization to hire the “safe” person, instead of the wild card. That does not mean that you should change who you are. It just means that if you are the wild card, your search may need to be longer and wider. As an aside; every job I was hired for, I was the under-qualified, wild card 2nd finalist. Fortunately for me, in each case, the finalist did something stupid once they thought they had the upper hand in negotiations, letting the job fall in my lap.

In the case of this AP, district leadership can’t figure him out. They love the results, but they don’t understand his style. He’s aggressive and all business in a district that values slow change and everyone getting along. At this time, he’s not a fit. Now that he is ready to assume greater leadership responsibility, he has to find the organization that needs and values his style of leadership.

Think. Work. Achieve.

Your turn…