Hi there. My name is Jeff Arthur with The Values Conversation, here today to remind us about … being a leader also means you want to make people around you your friends. Now, what do I mean by that? A great leader that I knew several years ago, I heard him say … this has probably been 30 plus years ago.

But he was talking about the people on his leadership team, and he said, just flat out, “Well, you know what? A lot of the strife and problems and a lot of the egos and whatever that other people struggle with in their teams, we don’t have, because they’re all my friends.” And at that time in my life, it was like I had been hit with a sledgehammer. It stunned me. You know, I was like, “Oh my gosh, that thought never occurred to me to make my coworkers my friends, if at all possible.”

And I understand that that can’t always be 100% true, but it might surprise you to know that there’s a lot more you have in common with your coworkers than you think. Whenever we do stuff in companies, we identify that a lot of people have the same values, and a lot of people have the same characteristics. It just may manifest itself a little differently because of environmental attributes, but man oh man, the people around us really could be some of our friends if we’re ready to do that and if we’re ready to allow people to be a friend to us. But that all starts with us being a friend to them first.

I just want to remind you at the end of the day, people who are going to serve with us, if we’re going to be spending that much time with them, perhaps we should get to know them. And perhaps we should try to build, I don’t know, a relationship that’s positive and supportive and helpful for both of us.

My name is Jeff Arthur with The Values Conversation. You can find out more about us online at