How Does Your Team Feel?

In honor of Maya Angelou…

Today is her birthday.  She would have been 91 years of age. 

I never met her personally, but I feel like I knew Maya Angelou. 

Growing up in Kentucky, teachers, my parents, and grandparents would always call my attention to her writings, quotes, and speeches.  She had a way about her.  A sense of grace, class, and eloquence which inspired us to become the absolute best version of ourselves we could possibly be.

If you like quotes, I’m sure you like this one:

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou

For every leader I’ve ever had:

  • When you were a visionary, I felt inspired by your passion.
  • When you were a coach, I felt capable and competent because of your encouragement.
  • When your approach was affiliative, I felt comforted by the community you built among us.
  • When you were inclusive and diplomatic, I felt like I belonged to a winning team.

On the other hand:

  • When you were relentless, driving and driving and driving, I felt pressured and backed into a corner.
  • When you were commanding, I felt belittled and wanted to be anywhere other than where you were.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve never forgotten how leaders made me feel.

How do you want people on your team to feel? Better yet, how does your team feel right now?

Leadership is important, but more important than leadership itself are the people we lead. 

As we celebrate the life and legacy of Maya Angelou today, make those in your life and on your teams FEEL: welcome, comfortable, and important.

When they feel significant, they will make significant contributions. What a feeling that will be for everyone involved.

Happy Birthday, Maya Angelou. Thank you for inspiring us to lead with hospitality…