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  • Writer's pictureJeff Orr, TEDx Spkr, MBA

Great Leader at Work, Not So Much at Home. Try this...

Jeff Orr, MBA, MSL, TEDx Speaker, Author, Millennial Leadership Expert

One of the many characteristics I have found in studying unstoppable leaders over the years is not only how they lead their business and teams, but also their family. These leaders take their teams and have planning sessions, set goals for the year, and then work strategically to achieve those goals. What caught my attention was that they did this with their family in a similar way. Do you do this?

Your immediate family relationships are your most valuable asset. Yet most of us do not act intentionally to grow those relationships. We just assume they will work on their own and we go from event to event, activity to activity, year upon year, and then wonder why our family is more dysfunctional than functional.

Families will disagree, argue, have stress points, and so on. You know this will happen. Are you intentionally building into your relationships at the same time to offset those harder moments? Think of it this way: You know you will get sick. It’s part of life. But how often you get sick is, at least, a bit in your control. You can be intentional about what you eat, how you exercise, how much sleep you get, and how you handle stress. All of these things, when worked on intentionally, can greatly lessen the likelihood you will fall ill. You will be happier and healthier. Your family relationships are very much the same.

How do you become intentional with your relationships? Try this simple exercise: Have a goal planning session for your family. Sit down as a family and dream together what you would like to do in the coming year. You might come up with two or three different areas to focus on, such as, Big Projects, Vacation, Spirituality/Faith, Community, Time Together, etc. What is important to each of you? Have a brainstorming session in each area. List any and all ideas. No idea is a bad idea and you can’t analyze the ideas. You’ll do that next.

Next, vote on the ideas. You may need to creatively lead here to make sure that some of your kid’s ideas are not only heard but chosen. Select one or two per category. Write it down. Make sure someone owns the goal. Be intentional about making them happen. It’s no different than what you do at work. Set a goal, identify intermediate steps, work toward it, check in from time to time to see how it is going, adjust as necessary. Use different words with your family so it is fun, creative, and exciting. Consider the ages of your kids and how they think. Keep your planning time long enough to get the job done, but short enough so your kids don’t disengage before the job’s done.

Your intentionality will go a long way in being a positive force against all the negativity you and your family face each day. Unstoppable leaders know this. Unstoppable leaders live it. Be intentional about making your family unstoppable!


Jeff Orr, a TEDx speaker, is an expert in leadership and he coaches executives, business owners, and individuals with the tools and skills to lead more effectively, build high-performing teams, and experience true success in their careers and personal lives. As a dynamic and energizing keynote speaker and corporate trainer to Fortune 500 companies, Jeff has helped thousands grow in their leadership to impact their organizations and communities. Jeff engages his audience through humor, real world stories, and a genuine care for the people he speaks to, helping them to build lasting success internally and externally. He is also author of the highly acclaimed book, Succeed In The New Normal. Through his coaching company, InDemand Leadership, Jeff empowers his clients to experience internal growth, which then translates into sustainable external success.

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