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How John Maxwell Navigates Leadership

I sent a note to John Maxwell. This is part 2 of his reply.

What do you do to navigate the changes your leadership journey brings to you? 

First, I think everyone navigates according to their pain file. When you don’t succeed at something, then it should prompt you to want to grow. For example, one year after I left my first church, I found out that the church had shrunk. I realized that it was because I hadn’t trained or equipped anyone.

I was the problem.

Out of that failure, I learned that I needed to learn to train other leaders so that progress and growth could be sustained whether I was there or not.

The second way I’ve navigated was according to opportunities. With new levels of leadership come new challenges. I’ve tried to see those as an opportunity to grow. The needs of the season dictate how a leader needs to change and grow.

I focused on becoming the person I needed to be to overcome the challenges in front of me.

The third way I navigated was through prayer.

In my experience, there are certain things that I learned only by seeking God.

It was a moment with God in 1976, when I felt called to teach leaders. Through that I started to teach leadership. Over the years, I’ve had many times when God gave me insight into how to overcome an obstacle or solve a problem.


Pain, opportunities, and prayer are guiding factors for John Maxwell on his leadership journey.

What guides you on your leadership journey?


Part 1 of John’s reply: How Leading Changed John Maxwell

John’s latest book: “The Five Levels of Leadership: Proven Steps to Maximize Your Potential,” is written in John’s typical style. You’ll find it easy to read, practical, and actionable.

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