The Importance of Your Attitude

“Leadership is practiced not so much in words as in attitude and in actions.”

~ Harold Geenen

The Importance of Your Attitude

by Kevin Eikenberry

Before any big game, coaches typically give their team a pep talk.

Coaches know from experience that sharing enthusiasm and delivering positive messages prior to the start of a game will help the team perform better. Maybe the other team is bigger, stronger, and faster. The coach may share those facts during practice but would never include them as the focus of the final words to a team. Will a pep talk alone create a win? Probably not, but everything else being equal, it will help.

Think about it this way. The more the expected pep talk provides hope – an opportunity to look at the world from the perspective of success and achievement – the better. Some call this optimism or enthusiasm or a positive mental attitude. Whatever you call it, science increasingly shows it to be a powerful force. Science or not, our experience tells us this attitude is contagious (Eikenberry, 2007, p. 151).

Eikenberry, K. (2007). Remarkable Leadership: Unleashing Your Leadership Potential One Skill at a Time. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.

Reprinted with permission from the OSU Leadership Center, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, (614) 292-3114,

Coaching Call To Action

Are you aware of the attitude you bring to encounters with others? Before you enter a room, start a meeting or pick up the phone, ask yourself, what is my attitude right now? Am I providing the space for growth, creative ideas and success or am I constricting, forcing, and deflating those around me? You get to choose which attitude you bring to the table.