Irrespective of whether we're aware of it, we will leave a legacy in our schools.
Although this thought has been on my mind for some time, I was catalyzed by a great article on this very topic in Rotman Management (a magazine from U. Toronto) this week.
The person being interviewed (about legacy thinking) proposed an exercise in which the leader writes down his/her leadership legacy statement. Research by psychologists shows that the act of writing it down makes the leader more cognizant of it, and therefore increases the likelihood that the leader will make it happen. There are five questions for consideration:
(1) How do you wish to be remembered as a leader by those inside and outside your organization? For which two or three personal characteristics (skills, behaviors, values) would you most like to be remembered?
(2) What have you learned in your role, your work, and your life thus far that you would most like to pass on?
(3) How will you convey that learning?
(4) What remains to be accomplished? Why is that important in building or completing your legacy?
(5) Aside from more time, what will help or impede you in completing what remains to be accomplished?