10 leadership traits I’ve adapted to motherhood

Updated: Feb 28

Most days, I feel like I’m a much better leadership consultant than mother, but I do know there are some extremely important leadership learnings that apply to parenting. In the spirit of Mother’s Day, I plan to renew my commitment to being the best mother and “leader of little leaders” I can be. These are – I know they work in business, so I’m giving them a try with my kids:


  1. If you can and should be doing it, I’m not doing it for you – when I do it for you I’m holding you back

  2. It’s okay for you to have setbacks and make mistakes – when you do, the only thing I expect from you is that you openly and honestly explore why it happened, think about what you could have done differently, and make the shifts necessary to avoid the same mistake

  3. You’re smarter and more capable than both of us even know – I will help you explore what you’re best at and help create opportunities for you to learn, grow, and be your best; your potential to achieve greatness is unlimited

  4. I will be clear about my expectations and then trust you to live up to them – I know you want to do the right thing (even though sometimes you won’t – see #2)

  5. When you tell me you’ve “got it covered” I will give you the space to follow-through – I won’t ask you ten times if you’ve done it yet (see #4)

  6. I’m here to help you expand your self-awareness, learn what you’re capable of, help you see your own potential, and build your confidence – I realize this won’t happen without honesty, candor, transparency, and positive intent

  7. I care about your opinion – I want to hear your views and understand how you think about things; when I’m asking you questions it is because I care and want to learn more about you, not to interrogate and fault find

  8. I will work to create positive energy and optimism – I know you’ll be your best if that’s what our home feels like

  9. I will recognize and celebrate your milestones, successes, and accomplishments – small and large

  10. I’m on your team, always – you never have to question my intentions or commitment to you

Abby Curnow-Chavez is a mother, leadership development expert and co-founder of the Trispective Group. She is the co-author of The Loyalist Team: How Trust, Candor, and Authenticity Create Great Organizations. For more information, or to take a free team snapshot assessment, please visit, www.trispectivegroup.com.

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