Gregory “Heady” Coleman headlined Junior League of Oklahoma City’s leadership training workshop on Saturday, June 1, as a featured speaker at the Meinders School of Business on Oklahoma City University’s campus. Coleman brought words of wisdom on leadership, service, and his pride for his hometown of Guthrie. Junior League Oklahoma City serves as a leadership and community service organization for women in the metro area who are interested in volunteering and personal development.
Coleman stressed the importance of servant leadership, as well as the necessity of communication in order for organizations to flourish.
“Take interest in employees,” Coleman stressed. “That will give members of an organization the opportunity to ‘buy in’ to the organization. You also need to give praise so that they know they are seen and valued.”
In addition to providing leadership and management guidelines, Coleman spoke heavily about how much the community of Guthrie means to him and to his family.
“Being named the Guthrie citizen of the year was one of the greatest honors of my life,” he said. “I knew I wanted to help our citizens improve and celebrate our community, and I created T-shirts for residents to wear to create pride in the wonderful community we have,” said Coleman. “ Our #communitywins program was created to provide a new culture in Guthrie where we could promote positive things on social media. When we change our language, we change the way we think. We wanted to provide our citizens with a voice in the community we call home.”
In addition to the importance of providing positive feedback and sentiments for the community, he also stressed the importance of providing programming that can unite all of Guthrie.
“You have to expect great things,” Coleman said. “When Guthrie residents met to discuss Red Brick Nights, we had to expect the event [in Guthrie] would gain momentum. Additionally, we wanted to create a place where our community could come together to connect and build relationships. Now Red Brick Nights has grown to be a large and successful gathering for community resident to come together and enjoy food and music. We hope it will only continue to grow, and our vision and positive thinking are what helped to grow this event.”
Coleman finalized his inspirational speech by reminding the audience that when we set out to lead, we must remember that people always come first.
“Do the work and bring others into your efforts. People come first, and when they feel heard and valued it will produce the best results,” expressed Coleman.