Leadership Montana Classroom Reflection: Indigenous Immersion Initiative Reflection: John Morrison, Helena, Class of 2005 and III 2022
Masters Class Session: Aimee Grmoljez
May 31, 2022
Masters Class Session: Tony Flynn
July 31, 2022


John Morrison, Helena, Class of 2005 and III 2022

Masters Class Reflection

Sara Smith, Missoula, Class of 2012 and Masters 2022

Leadership is messy. It is hard. It can be isolating and lonely as well, especially when the challenge feels overwhelming. My first session of the Master Class last Fall illustrated the toll that leadership can take during the hard times. It was reflected in the faces of my fellow classmates and those feelings were palpable in the room that first day. Rising to the enormous task of leading during a pandemic, during divisiveness in communities, zoom calls, and a real lack of connection while still trying to be available to family and friends left many of us empty, exhausted, and just over it. Our “Give-A-F#@$” had left the building.

Working through value exercises and getting connected back to our real purpose refocused our efforts. Understanding our patterns in leadership and how we default helped us craft ways to think differently and find new paths to accomplish the same hard tasks ahead of us. Making sure we are taking care of ourselves is so incredibly important. Put your breathing apparatus on first in a loss of pressure only allows you to help others more fully.

By our last session, the change was real. I saw smiles on faces, a recognition of how far people had come in a short time because we engaged, reached out, actively listened, and were curious with each other. I had strengthened old relationships, formed new ones, and really appreciated every single one of my classmates in ways that I had not even anticipated or expected. The work is far from over. It never is (isn’t leadership fun?) but having a support network is lifesaving. I am so grateful for the experience, for my classmates, and for the leaders leading leaders in this organization.