Dr. John C. Maxwell

Dr. John C. Maxwell (3)

John C. Maxwell is an internationally recognized leadership expert, speaker, and author who has sold over 12 million books. His organizations have trained more than one million leaders worldwide. Dr. Maxwell is the founder of Injoy Stewardship Services and EQUIP.

Thursday, 20 September 2007 00:00

The Blind Spot

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I have almost died on several occasions. I’d like to blame these near-death experiences on others, but I suppose they might have something to do with me. Let me explain…

Anyone who has driven for a length of time in Atlanta can testify to the horrors of its traffic situation. I’m sure other cities can make the claim of worst traffic in America, but I can’t imagine anyplace worse than Atlanta. To complicate the problem, I wouldn’t describe myself as a particularly patient person. In fact, my wife might describe me as downright impatient—and she would probably be right.

When in traffic, I’ve always subscribed to the bob-and-weave philosophy. If rampant lane changing can save me a car length or two, then I’ll switch lanes like Liz Taylor switches husbands.

Unfortunately, there have been a few instances when I’ve not been diligent in checking my blind spot when shifting lanes. And, let me tell you, nothing jolts a person like the angry honking of a car horn only a few inches to his left or right! Thankfully, I’ve been able to survive without crashing or receiving anything worse than a friendly wave of the middle finger from a fellow driver. Since my blind spot has nearly caused my demise several times, I now pay extra attention to it. I double and triple confirm no cars are there before I merge into another lane.

Blind spots can wreck a leader’s journey. In this edition of LW, I would like illustrate one of the most common blind spots I have observed in leaders. Next edition, I’ll explore a second customary blind spot faced by leaders, and in each lesson, I’ll give you advice for avoiding the dangers of the blind spot.

Friday, 07 September 2007 22:00

Making Failure Your Friend

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You find all of Dr. John C. Maxwell teaching under the menu "Leadership"

Failure is either your friend or your enemy - and you choose which it is.

johnmaxwell2.jpgIf you play a dirge every time you fail, then failure will remain your enemy. But if you determine to learn from your failures, you actually benefit from them - and that makes failure your friend.

William Bolitho said, "The most important thing in life is not to capitalize on our gains. Any fool can do that.

The really important thing is to profit from your losses.

That requires intelligence; and makes the difference between a man of sense and a fool."

Anyone can make failure their friend by maintaining a teachable attitude and using a strategy for learning from their mistakes. To turn your losses into profits, ask the following questions every time you face adversity:

Monday, 03 September 2007 21:00

Failing Forward

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You find all of Dr. John C. Maxwell teaching under the menu "Leadership"

What are you afraid of as a leader?  On the top of many people's list is failure.  Is it on your list too?

johnmaxwell2.jpgJ.M. Barrie said, "We are all failures--at least, all the best of us are."  In my 30-plus years of leadership experience, I've come to the conclusion that one of the most valuable but underestimated abilities that leaders can posses is the ability to do what I call "failing forward."  It's more than having a good attitude about your mistakes, and it's a step beyond simply taking risks.  Failing forward is the ability to get back up after you've been knocked down, learn from your mistake, and move
forward in a better direction.

You see, everybody makes mistakes.  But the real difference between average people and achieving people is their PERCEPTION OF and RESPONSE TO failure.  Nothing else has the same kind of impact on people's ability to accomplish their dreams.

What do you dream of accomplishing?  Unfortunately, no matter how gifted or knowledgeable you are, you will make mistakes along the way to your dream.  Failure is the price you must pay on the road to success.  That's just how it works.  But the good news is that the better you are at failing forward, the sooner you can accomplish your dreams.

Before you put away your list of resolutions for the new year, look at the following misconceptions about failure.  Take an honest inventory to determine if your perception of failure is what it should be.  If you share any of these misconceptions, add to your list the resolution to change the way you think about failure.

1.  PEOPLE THINK FAILURE IS AVOIDABLE.  IT'S NOT.

You've probably heard the saying, "To err is human, to forgive divine."  That was written by Alexander Pope more than 250 years ago.  And he was only paraphrasing a saying that was common 2,000
years ago, during the time of the Romans.  Things today are the same as they were then:  People make mistakes.