Meet Jessica Gamble, mom, wife, and principal of an elementary school in Cleveland. She’s also the only other principal I know who has integrated her parents into her school life.
Another fun fact about Jessica – she was the captain of the Washington Wizards “fan patrol” – so you know she is big energy and big fun!
Before joining The Ruckus Maker Mastermind™ Jessica was at a crossroads. Her district was training her to be a manager and she wanted to deepen her leadership practice.
And another wake up call: she has no memories of any school principal in her entire life.
But that’s not how Jessica rolls. As an elementary school principal, she makes it a point to see every student, every day.
“I wanted to build a school where kids come every single day and they feel loved and cared for and seen and heard.”
Jessica wants to have connections with staff and students. She also enjoys noodling on big questions, like:
“How do you motivate people? How do you break down barriers of diversity, equity, inclusion? How do you have hard conversations that are really uncomfortable? How do you have a vision that you kind of cast out there and you work really hard to achieve that?”
These are the kind of questions that excite Jessica.
Questions like these are important. Have you heard it said that, “managers have answers and leaders ask questions”?
I agree with that statement 100%!
Jessica knew this to be true as well. She wanted to be a great leader, not just a manager, so she looked for support.
Jessica is NOT a Play-It-Safe-Principal. She’s a Ruckus Maker!
The district wasn’t seeing or hearing her. Their monthly principal meetings focused 100% on the managerial aspect of the role.
Can you relate?
So Jessica jumped right into The Ruckus Maker Mastermind™.
In her words:
“And so I took a risk. I applied not thinking that I would get in… you and I met and we had a call. I remember that day specifically… I so desperately want to be an amazing school principal that people remember forever … and I needed something to kinda help push me in that area.”
She never should have doubted that she’d get in The Ruckus Maker Mastermind™. When Jessica joined, our community upgraded.
But joining our community wasn’t a walk in the park. Jessica was nervous and second guessed the value she could bring to the other principals.
During her first meeting she thought:
“Holy moly, you guys are going through some really interesting things and I can’t even begin to give you advice on how you should or could handle those situations.”
But her nervousness and doubt disappeared somewhere during her first meeting:
“The mastermind always felt like home. It never felt like a pace I wasn’t supposed to be.”
That might be the most meaningful feedback I’ve ever received from a mastermind member.
Belonging is important to us here at Better Leaders Better Schools.
It’s also the “B” in the ABCs of Powerful Professional Development ® and one reason The Ruckus Maker Mastermind™ is such a hit with Jessica and many other school leaders.
Feeling connected is important, but we’re in the results business as well.
When I asked Jessica how life and leadership is now different, she said:
“Before I wanted to be liked because I thought that led to trust. I’ve learned that trust doesn’t always mean that your staff likes you. I’m bolder than I was before I started the Mastermind. I know what I want for my students and staff. And I don’t apologize for that.”
Jessica’s confidence is inspiring and a key component of effective school leadership.
As for parting advice, here’s what Jessica has to say:
“It’s okay to bet on yourself. I think the Mastermind is betting on yourself. And for those of you that are contemplating it and wondering if I should do it, the answer should be yes. Bet on yourself and you won’t be disappointed.”
Are you ready to “bet on yourself” and upgrade your bravery and confidence?
Today is the day to apply to The Ruckus Maker Mastermind™.
We can help you create strong relationships with students and become a principal your community will never forget.
We will also help you upgrade your confidence. Kiss goodbye apologizing for wanting what you want – especially when it’s good for kids!
Apply to our community here: https://www.betterleadersbetterschools.com/mastermind-application/
(We have two cohorts for women in leadership and a cohort focused on BIPOC school leaders as well).
Like Jessica said, “Bet on yourself by applying to The Ruckus Maker Mastermind™. You won’t be disappointed!”