Developing the Leader Within

If you are in any sort of leadership position, from church leader to parent to business executive, you have probably wondered what got you the point you were at in leadership and how to develop that leader further within to inspire others. John C. Maxwell shows us how to develop the vision, value, influence, and motivation required of successful leaders. This is the second leadership book that I’ve read as a recommendation from my business office. I will say that it receives a 5-star rating but for different readings than you might have seen from my blog on What to Say When You Talk to Yourself.

Developing the Leader Within is only 10 chapters long and the main reason I loved it was actually due to how interactive it was. At the end of Chapter One: Influence, I was already wishing that I had bought the book so I could have written in the spaces provided versus writing down my thoughts into a notebook. Either way, it’s an important process to engage with the material. So throughout each chapter you’ll find yourself making notes about what your own thoughts and perceptions on leadership are. For example: in Chapter One, Maxwell wants the readers to address what the 5 levels of leadership are, what level they are currently on with most people, what level they are on with other influencers, and who the top 5 influencers in their company or university are. I absolutely loved this activity because it gave me a better idea of who I am and who I can go to in my circle to sharpen my leadership skills.

In Chapters 2-6, I took notes of inspirational and thought provoking quotes, how to prioritize our daily habits to reach our long-term goals, why people resist change and the evolutionary process of change, ways to change mindsets, problem solving tips, and the 6 steps of changing yours/others attitudes. I think after absorbing and sinking in all of that information my favorite chapter after chapter one wasn’t actually until chapter seven. That’s due to the fact that my job is heavily based on your people skills and communication (two things I’m great at) and that’s what was focused on in Chapter 7: People.

If you don’t have good people skills or you’re an introverted leader, I HIGHLY recommend this chapter because you will learn about:

  • the 3 levels of people/working skills
  • how there is success in developing others and what it takes
  • assumptions about people
  • what motivates people
  • what demotivates people
  • the 10 commandments of confrontation (10 ways to effectively handle a confrontation)
  • the right assistance needed to develop people

The last three chapters (8-10) discuss what it means to be a visionary, how to establish and maintain self discipline, and lastly, the elements of developing a winning staff.

As a result of reading this book I was able to have faith in the leaders at my business office to guide and train me as an up and coming business owner in the financial industry. This month I was able to recruit the first few people to my team and climb the first steps to my promotion.

Thank you for taking the time to read this blog post. I hope you go out and buy this book because it really is a winner. It’s something that you could read over and over or exchange between friends and develop leaders in your circle.