Let me share what I learned from my mentor John C Maxwell this week. This week John taught us about Inside Out Leadership.
The inside influences the outside. Great leadership is always an inside job.
When you’re better on the inside than the outside, and when you’re bigger on the inside than the outside, over time, you will become greater on the outside. In other words, when you’re better on the outside than the inside, and bigger on the outside than the inside, over time, you will become less on the outside.
Better on the inside deals with character, integrity, authenticity, honesty, trustworthiness, walk your talk, showing more than telling, being more than doing. With a better inside, we may have a slow start, but it eventually shows up.
The number one criterion for success is the ability to connect with people. Connecting is the ability to identify with people and relate to them to increase our influence with them.
Characteristics of inside-out leaders:
- Inside-out leaders value more than position.
- Inside-out leaders inspire others because others inspire them. You cannot inspire others unless you get inspired yourself.
- Inside-out leaders are secure enough to appreciate and acknowledge others.
- Inside-out leaders do not abuse power.
- Inside-out leaders extend grace and forgiveness to others.
- Inside out, leaders acknowledge and apologize for their mistakes.
Often, leaders mistakenly believe that they must be considered great to do only the right things. Apologizing is an act of humility. Humility attracts and inspires. Arrogance does not.
Connectors live what they communicate. During the first six months, your communication overrides credibility, and after six months, your credibility overrides communication.
Skillful leaders constantly uncover their true selves, manage their emotions, achieve great goals, and are conscious of their unique talents and how to maximize them.
John C. Maxwell offers these eight questions to assess one’s level of self-leadership:
- Are you investing in yourself? This question is all about your personal growth. How can you teach what you do not know and take others to where you have not been?
- Are you genuinely interested in others? Are you more concerned about other’s agendas than your own? There is nothing worse than a self-centered leader.
- Are you doing what you love, and do you love what you do? Passion provides the fuel that provides you with the energy to be a great leader.
- Are you investing time with the right people? Leaders surround themselves with talented, inspired people who want to make a difference.
- Are you working in your strength zone? Leaders are keenly aware of what they are great at and what they love to do, and they spend most of their time doing these things.
- Are you taking others to a higher level? Leaders help others unleash their inner talents.
- Are you taking care of today? Leaders are natural visionaries, and they also know how to focus on the daily agenda and priorities at hand.
- Are you taking the time to think? Great leaders love action. However, they also are talented at disciplining themselves to stop every day and think creatively.
Change the world around you by changing yourself. Regularly retrospect your self-leadership abilities to grow and evolve.