I had a client recently who was getting caught up in the idea of being a ‘great’ supervisor. She really wanted to be the best she could be — a very worthwhile endeavor! The tricky part comes, however, in how we measure ‘greatness.’

“So,” I asked her, “have you ever had one?”

“Had what?”

“A  great supervisor. Have you ever experienced that?”

“Oh, yes!” she gushed. “I’ve had several amazing supervisors.”

“So let me ask you something. Did everyone on your team consider them great? Did everyone love them like you did?”

She paused a moment, thinking through her answer. Eventually, she shook her head. “No,” she said with a wry smile. “Not everyone.” 

And that’s the important thing to remember: no leader is ever able to please everyone. Everyone has different needs; everyone needs different things from their leaders at different times. So when you are ‘great’ to one person you might just be ‘okay’ to another and you might be downright frustrating to someone else! What’s more, you could be ‘great’ to someone one day only for their circumstances to change, and then you’re only ‘so-so,’ because they have different needs now.

You can’t be everything to everyone. You can only only be your own best version of yourself. 

Make sure you’re pursing that.