Great leaders are grateful
What truly makes a great leader? A great team! You can’t lead without a group to mentor, coach, teach and encourage. So first of all - be grateful for your team. Each person on your team has a purpose or they wouldn’t be there. Finding just the right person for each purpose is something to really be grateful for! Be sure to let each person know that you appreciate what they do to complete the team.
What truly makes a great leader? A great team! You can’t lead without a group to mentor, coach, teach and encourage. So first of all - be grateful for your team.
Each person on your team has a purpose or they wouldn’t be there. Finding just the right person for each purpose is something to really be grateful for! Be sure to let each person know that you appreciate what they do to complete the team.
Feeling important and appreciated is a major factor in retention of employees. We all like to be seen and seen as individuals. Beyond their general contribution, acknowledge your gratefulness for their specific acts. Whether it is timeliness, positivity, supportiveness or other. Thank them for specific ways they have shown a quality. Not just general thanks for being on time but a recognition that they are on time (or early) and an occasion that made a difference. Such as filling in for a colleague running late or helping to provide last minute help to prepare for a meeting they aren’t part of. If a team member often assists other team members outside of their job description, let them know one on one that you notice and appreciate their kindness.
Part of leading with gratitude is having a personal attitude of gratitude. We all get down at times, so we need to consider the many things we do have to be grateful for. And there is truly much to be grateful for. I believe that leading by example is one of the most powerful methods to convey a message. If you talk it but don’t walk it, it won’t be believed.
Grateful is a state of mind. You determine your gratitude with a situation. When we are aware of how to be grateful, we will find the positive.
- Do you have a job?
- Do you have a home?
- Do you have food? Feeding America reports that 34 million Americans have food insecurity including 9 million children.
- Do you have access to safe water? According to the United Nations in March of 2023, 1 in 4 people in the world do not have access to clean drinking water.
Practice gratitude every day. Jon Gordon says we need to state things positively – we “GET” to go to work, we “GET” to see our family and so on. If we approach situations with gratitude, we will approach the person, situation or task with confidence and enthusiasm.
Gratitude is contagious. The more you model the more you see. Grateful leaders lead with gratitude for their team, position, and opportunities. We all like to follow an optimistic leader who sees the possibilities in us. Who sees the goal and who leads with a positive belief in the outcome.
Think of a great leader you have had. What about that person made you want to follow and be loyal to them? What can you do to emulate that person and increase your leadership gratitude? How can you model gratitude today?
Bobette Thompson is the Chief People Officer of Seasonal Pathways and the President/CEO of Child Care Systems of America, Inc., an early education management and consulting company. In her 25 years in the industry, she has participated in the opening of 25 centers and consulted with numerous others. Bobette holds a Bachelor’s in Business Administration and CPA certification. She seeks to contribute to the industry by serving on state child and care committees and presenting at conferences. Bobette is past president of the Association for Early Learning Leaders.