Kentucky Governor, Andy Beshear, Leads With Hospitality

Kentucky Governor, Andy Beshear, Leads With Hospitality.

Every day at 5pm Eastern time, Governor Andy Beshear of Kentucky holds a press conference at the Kentucky State Capitol, in Frankfurt, KY.  He’s united the state with connection, compassion, engagement, and even some very effective coaching and incredible inspiration at a time when people need all of the above.

Though, I live in Las Vegas, I tune in, streaming Andy online every afternoon at 2pm Pacific Time, 5pm Eastern Time.

Here’s how Andy leads with hospitality:

He connects with people and connects people to one another

First, Andy connects with his audience, Kentuckians living through the realities of this coronavirus pandemic. He reminds everyone that we’re all in this together by sharing stories and showcasing how people throughout the state are dealing with the dynamics of this season.  

He shows images of houses and businesses lit up with green LED lights, up lighting, or spotlights for two reasons:  1) to show compassion, honoring those who have passed away due to complications from COVID19, and 2) because green is a sign and color of renewal, reminding everyone that we will get through this, coming out stronger on the other side.

He reminds everyone to ring their bells, if they have them, at 10am every single morning.  This is yet another way to bring people together, emotionally connecting them with one another and especially connecting them to their collective cause – staying home today will save lives tomorrow.

He strives for self-mastery (and encourages everyone else to do the same)

Systems, processes, and people working everywhere from on the front lines of healthcare facilities to the state government offices are being tested like they’ve never been tested before. This entire dilemma is uncharted waters for every single person in the world.  That includes, Andy Beshear; and he doesn’t pretend to have all the answers.  In fact, he apologizes and takes 100% responsibility for the opportunities for improvement in certain areas.  

He goes a step further, and takes 100% personal accountability for getting people answers, taking action where necessary, and simply delivering on his promise to lead, serve, and protect The Commonwealth of Kentucky.  

He leads with a servant heart

Andy listens to questions from Kentuckians.  He listens to the experts at the federal and state levels, he listens to peers, he listens to his family, and he listens to God.  It’s quite apparent just how much and how well Andy listens because of how much he knows.  And we all lean in and listen carefully when he shares what he knows because we know he cares.  

He’s always teaching, educating everyone on what he’s just learned or what he would like to see everyone do to slow and stop the spread of COVID19.  It’s clear that Andy stays active and accountable, making the most of every single day to serve every single Kentuckian.  

He engages with people

Not only does he take questions for at least fifteen to twenty minutes at the end of his remarks every single day, but he also encourages Kentuckians.  He points out where and how and when they are doing a great job with social distancing, slowing the spread, and celebrates how the entire state is uniting together executing the plan.  

He coaches people

Andy’s intentional and purposeful efforts to connect, serve, and engage with his own team and fellow Kentuckians earn him the right to coach them.  He is just as quick to coach as he is to praise. 

When he sees or hears about groups of ten or more people gathering in parks, grocery stores, or even churches, he simply tells them, “You can’t be doing that.”

Everyone knows his coaching comes from a place of love and concern, and he is specific with his message, at every opportunity.  He gives crystal clear expectations, demonstrates the precise behavior he expects from everyone else, carves out time to observe and inspect what he inspects, and he certainly steps up and coaches where and when necessary.

He inspires people

Andy is human, and he effortlessly conveys humanness, compassion, and love with every conversation, statement, expectation, and message he delivers.  

He connects with people on a human leveland that inspires people to put forth a “next level” effort in executing the plan.

He tells stories of his own and shares how he feels.  He shares stories of others all across Kentucky and even the country, as a whole. He creates memorable experiences during his press briefings by enlightening the audiences with charts, graphs, metrics, and data which further reinforce his points and calls to action.  

He evokes a widespread sense of pride across the entire state and beyond. We, Kentuckians, are proud to be from Kentucky, right now more than ever, because of Andy’s inspirational leadership and overarching message to take care of each other. This also happens to be the very essence of gracious hospitality.

He continues to create a collective movement, all across The Commonwealth of Kentucky with bells ringing at 10am, green lights illuminating to show compassion and a look forward to a season of renewal, on the other side of this crisis.  

I grew up in Grayson, KY. With the exception of my uncles in Seattle, my entire family is still in Kentucky (or just across the river to the north, in Ohio, or across the border in Tennessee to the south).  

Even though for the past five years I’ve lived in Dana Point, CA, and I now live in Las Vegas, NV; my heart is still in Kentucky and always will be.  

Andy Beshear said last week that he’s never been prouder to be Kentucky’s governor.  

I’ve never been prouder to be from Kentucky.

Thank you, Andy, for leading with hospitality.  You’re not only inspiring all of us, you’re keeping my family safe.

As Andy says, “We will get through this, and we’ll get through it together.”

Go Cats.


PS: The Kentucky Wildcats would have also won the 2020 NCAA Mens’s Basketball Championship, if not for the COVID19 situation. Thanks, CBS Sports, for airing the 2012 National Championship game this afternoon. It was a much needed pick-me-up.

In all seriousness, I wish everyone all the best. Keep looking up, take care of each other, and stay home.