When a little uncertainty goes a long way for heads

Instead of skating over the unknowns, leaders will thrive if they seek support and embrace the fact that some things cannot be controlled, finds Simon Creasey

Magazine article image

The common perception of strong leadership is that it is all about certainty and confident decision-making. So is a sense of uncertainty a trait that headteachers should try to avoid – or even feel ashamed of?

The short answer, based on the research, is “No”. In his 2016 book, Nonsense: the power of not knowing, author Jamie Holmes argues that uncertainty improves decision-making, “promotes empathy and boosts creativity”. Furthermore, a 2014 study, undertaken by Luxi Shen et al and published in the Journal of Consumer Research, finds that uncertainty is capable of generating positive ...

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.

Subscribe now