Lessons Learned from John Maxwell Revisited


I did a major cleanup of my post on lessons learned from John Maxwell:

Lessons Learned from John Maxwell

It should be much easier to read now. 

It was worth cleaning up because John Maxwell is one of the deepest thinkers in the leadership space.  He’s published more than 50 books on leadership and he lives and breathes leadership in business and in life.

When I first started studying leadership long ago, John Maxwell’s definition of leadership was the most precise I found:

“Leadership is influence.”

As I began to dig through his work, I was amazed at the nuggets and gems and words of wisdom that he shared in so many books.  I started with Your Road Map for Success.   I think my next book was The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership.   Ironically, I didn’t realize it was the same author until I started to notice on my shelf that I had a growing collection of leadership books, all by John Maxwell.

It was like finding the leadership Sherpa.

Sure enough, over the years, he continued to fill the shelves at Barnes & Nobles, with book after book on all the various nooks and crannies of leadership. 

This was about the same time that I noticed how Edward de Bono had filled the shelves with books on thinking.  I realized that some people really share there life’s work as a rich library that is a timeless gift for the world.   I also realized that it really helps people stand out in their field or discipline when they contribute so many guides and guidance to the art and science of whatever their specific focus is.

What I like about John Maxwell’s work is that it’s plain English and down to Earth.  He writes in a very conversational way, and you can actually see his own progress throughout his books.  In Your Road Map for Success, it’s a great example of how he doesn’t treat leadership as something that comes naturally.  He works hard at it, to build his own knowledge base of patterns, practices, ideas, concepts, and inspirational stories.

While he’s created a wealth of wisdom to help advance the practice of leadership, I think perhaps his greatest contribution is The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership.  It’s truly a work of art, and he does an amazing job of distilling down the principles that serve as the backbone of effective leadership.

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