On Leadership and Your Personal Theme Music

Don't Stop Believin'

Who doesn’t want their own theme music? Seriously. Wouldn’t it be awesome to walk into a room with the sound of your favorite song announcing your arrival?

But what if the song playing in your head is “Don’t Stop Believing” but your team hears “I Hate You” when you walk into a room.

So what are the theme song that is playing to you and your audience and what can you do about it?

On Leadership and Your Personal Theme Music

Pick the song that represents your leadership

Regardless of your favorite genre of music, there is probably a song that reminds you of a time that you felt powerful, happy, humble and engaged with life. Think of a few songs like that and listen to them again.

Listen to each a few times and write down why they feel like your leadership theme song. It could be that they speak to your goals or are an anthem of action/feeling.

Whatever the reason, make sure it’s a song that feels right to you.

Find out what song the team associates with you

In an upcoming status meeting (or development conversation or whatever), find out what song the people on your team associate most closely with you. You can do this subtlety or just come right out and ask. It’s not a typical question and can be a good way to really engage them.

You might even have a conversation about their song, who knows???

It’s likely that there will be a gap between the sentiments/meaning of the songs that people associate with you and your own view. This is actually a good thing.

Bridge the theme song gap

List out the attributes that the people on your team associated with you and the song they selected.

  • Are those the ways you want to be known?
  • Do they advance your team’s success?

If yes, just keep doing what you have been doing. If they don’t think through different ways to act so you get closer to your Leadership Theme song. There are no right answers, but it might be things like

  • Give more personal recognition
  • Share more about projects
  • Help to remove obstacles more
  • Be more available to them

Whatever it is, make sure you list out 2-3 ways you will bridge that gap every quarter and work on it.


Remember there is no right song to be, but whatever you pick make sure your actions show the meaning you’ve associated with it. It’s a little bit like having a personal mission/vision.

It is a method to view decisions and actions through.

Use it as a measure or barometer for whether the action you are taking will be in line with your meaning of the song. If it’s not, do something different. If that happens often, maybe it’s time for a new song.

Your leadership theme song is just another way to think about how to be more of the leader you want and your team needs you to be. Have fun with it.

What’s your leadership theme song and why? I would love to hear your thoughts!


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Anil Saxena is a President & Senior Consultant at Cube 214 Consulting
He helps teams create environments that generate repeatable superior results
Email | LinkedIn | Twitter | Web | Blog | (847) 212-0701

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L2L Contributing Author