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Thank you to the 1,400 leaders who’ve generously done the 7 questions!
I hope reading

7 Questions with Erik Hofsink

helps you in your leadership.



Jonno White

7 Questions with Erik Hofsink

Name: Erik Hofsink

Current title: Principal

Current organisation: Emmaus Christian School Canberra

My career as a school principal started in South Africa as a twenty-two-year-old in Cape Town and since moving to Australian in 1995, my career as a principal in Australian schools started again in 2004. Since January 2016, I have been principal of Emmaus Christian School in Canberra and before that, I was principal of Launceston Christian School in Tasmania from Jan 2004 - Dec 2015. Alongside my role as principal, I have served as Public Advocate for the Australian Association of Christian Schools. I held positions in Principal’s Associations and Australian Heads of Independent Schools and from 2018-2020 served as an Executive Member of the Association of Independent Schools in the ACT. I have been married to Emmie for 33 years, and we have three married children and two grandboys. In 2018 I received the AIS ACT Excellence in Educational Leadership Award.

7 Questions with Erik Hofsink

1. What have you found most challenging as a leader in the education sector?

Managing the tension between those in school communities who think they know, and those who really know...

2. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?

Very rigidly. I start early, sleep early and always do the tasks I most dread or dislike, first.

3. What's the most recent significant leadership lesson you've learned?

Those people who look to you for leadership need to know that, like them, leaders are always learning. This leaves room for much-needed grace and patience.

4. What's one book that has had a profound impact on your leadership so far? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?

Crucial Conversations by Patterson, Grenny, McMillan and Switzler. What I have learned from this book is captured in the title...

5. How do you find and keep great leaders in the education sector?

By not just looking at CV's and years of experience, but at people skills, teachability and humility.

6. What's most important as a leader in the education sector for developing a culture of wellbeing in your staff and students?

The building, growing and sustaining of trust.

7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a leader in the education sector so far?

One of my (very popular amongst her peers) students had no fear to comment on social media that her principal taught her something very important during an assembly that morning. What I taught the students that day was really not a big deal but her courage to go online and tell the world that she has learned from me was an unforgettable moment of meaningfulness as a leader in the sector that I am passionate about.

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