My girls have been talking about Mother’s Day for weeks: planning, sneaking, scheming, secret-keeping.

The littlest girl has decided that every day is Mother’s Day. So, on sunny afternoons she brings me flowers in her outstretched palm declaring “Happy Mother’s Day,” day after day.

I love that.

As a mom, I know I am a leader, making a difference where I am, every day.

Leadership is influence, and moms influence their families in ways both large and small. Moms are both front line supervisors and top level executives.

In a top level executive role, moms create culture in their families.What kind of family do you have? We have a start-the-day-snuggling family, a be-outside-as-much-as-we can kind of family. We are a library family, a read-together family; we are a traditions kind of family, with homemade pizza Fridays and pancake Saturdays. Every family is different, with culture shaped on purpose or along the way.

As front line supervisors, moms set the tone and shape attitudes in their families. I have noticed lately how much my mood can affect my children and change the tenor of our day. If I match their grumpy and raise with my own cranky, we all fall apart. But when I start the day well, everything — from getting out the door for school to getting to bed at night — goes more smoothly.

Moms make myriad decisions daily, both mundane (front line supervisor role) and far-reaching (top level executive role.) Can I have a piece of gum, Mom? What’s for dinner tonight? Can I join the swim team? Have a cell phone? Go to my friend’s slumber party? Even the most routine decisions can have long lasting consequences.

In our roles at the front lines and the top levels of our families, our influence is undeniable. The rewards may not always be as easily identifiable as on Mother’s Day, but every day holds it’s own joys. I measure my days in sticky kisses, warm hugs, and purple flowers, offered in a tiny upturned palm.

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms who read this blog, including my own. I wish you a wonderful day!

This post originally appeared at Mountain State University LeaderTalk and is reposted here with permission. For more Mother’s Day thoughts, revisit my posts from Mother’s Day 2009 or this outstanding reflection from Erin Schreyer, also posted in 2009.

Photo by Caree March.