Every Voice Matters

David Graham June 29, 2015

Leadership Insights, Self-Improvement

iStock_000013036927_LargeMy mother has always been my greatest role model for how to treat people with kindness and how to approach every human interaction with compassion and curiousity. She was a schoolteacher, and I imagine her as fair as she was kind, and able to provide positive reinforcement when the time was right. She would tell me that it was easy to give attention to the picture perfect pupil at the front of the class who sits up tall and gets all the questions right. But what about the student who’s slouched in the back, feeling unsure, and always seems to be imaging herself worlds away from where she needs to be? Was she MORE or LESS deserving of attention?

This comparison between the two learners has always been interesting to me, and it’s evolved to become relevant to the work I do now. The situation goes on in offices everywhere!  It’s easy to motivate the budding office superstar, but how can you build-up those that need it most?

Here’s a start…

Mute your smart phone; put your laptop on sleep mode and give them your undivided attention.

Everyone on the team should have a voice and everyone should feel like they matter.

We live in a culture where we are made to feel that we are not good enough, not smart enough, not strong enough…

It’s time to build people up instead of tearing them down.  Nurture individuals and bring out their brilliance.

Could you imagine your team if EVERYONE were extroverted superstars? Your office may feel a little unbalanced… or nuts! Remember that with the seemingly introverted staff, you still interviewed, liked, and hired them. Can you recollect the spark that you once saw in the ‘quiet thunder’ that inspired you to invite them to your team? Consider sharing that with them!

Now that’s how you build a great team!


David Graham

Dave coaches good leaders who want to be great leaders and he works with leaders to build high performing, super-focused teams. For transformational experiences, he takes teams out of the boardroom and into nature.