I attended a wonderful workshop last week. The workshop leader was Janice Madariaga. This was the second time that I attended one of her workshops and I was thrilled to see her there!!. Janice encouraged us to find an “Aha!” moment every day, and read or listen to at least one inspirational book every week.
During the workshop, Janice mentioned another workshop leader named Coach Joe Gilliam, who recently passed away. Anybody that has been blessed with the opportunity to attend one of Coach Joe’s workshops will probably tell you that Coach Joe was not a man to mince words. He sometimes sounded harsh- but he always spoke respectfully.

What I learned from Coach Joe: Leaders are always on call. If we see something wrong, we must try to correct it. He urged us to seek time everyday to fill our heads with positive thoughts. He urged us to constantly respond to life with the words “Excellent and Exceptional”.

I watched this man in amazement. He was extremely animated and he interspersed personal stories into his workshop. He taught us that we don’t always have to separate our personal selves from our professional selves – his love for his wife and pride in his family shone through every story and example. His priorities were clearly stated with every word he uttered.

What I learned from Janice: Allow yourself the freedom to write down your “Aha” moments. Also, to read at least one inspirational book or listen to an inspirational audio book per week. She said that “we only have to give what we put inside”.

Coach Joe used an example of a supervisor that allowed friendship with his employees to get in the way of making good decisions. The supervisor in the example was afraid that his employees would no longer like him. He urged this supervisor to post a sign in his office: I am here to lead, not to be liked. Yes, this sounds tough. But, we have all seen instances in the workplace of situations where friendship outside the workplace influences how employees are treated at the job site. The negative ramifications to employee morale are huge!!!!

As we accept the role of leader, we also accept the responsibility associated with the role. Coach Joe, you touched many lives and influenced a lot of leaders. You will be missed!

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