The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership -By John C. Maxwell - Jibran Bashir Leadership Institute

A Book summary of “The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership” – By John C. Maxwell

If you want to make a positive impact in this world, one thing will definitely help, and that is your leadership ability. In this book, John C. Maxwell shares his top 21 time-tested leadership principles.  These principles are the core elements of being a leader. The laws are based on the premise that leadership is not just about a business or organization, but also about self-development and the development of others. 

 

1. THE LAW OF THE LID

Your effectiveness is determined by your capacity to lead. This law states that our potential has a limit that is determined by our capacity for leadership. The limit to our abilities depends on different variables like interpersonal skills, commitment to success, vision, and past performance. The main point of this law is to realize the importance of leadership ability and to identify where you’re at in that out of 10. The law of lid has flexibility so don’t think that as a leader where you are today is as good as you will ever be. You can continuously grow yourself, but it demands your dedication and willingness.

 

2. THE LAW OF INFLUENCE

 “The true measure of leadership is influence-nothing more, nothing less.”

-John C. Maxwell

True leadership only comes from influence and true leaders develop followers, not because of their title but because they influence others positively. You are not a leader if people don’t follow your lead and the proof of leadership is always found in the followers. The best leaders always understand that their job is to help others to reach their full potential even if it means that one day they will become better leaders than themselves. If you want to become more influential then take care of these 7 areas.

  1. Character- Who you are
  2. Knowledge-What you know
  3. Experience-Where you’ve been
  4. Ability-What you can do
  5. Relationships-Who you know
  6. Intuition- What you feel
  7. Past Success- What you have done

 

3.    THE LAW OF PROCESS

“Leadership Develops Daily, Not in a Day.”

-John C. Maxwell

 

Leadership is a lifelong process and leaders are lifelong learners. Leaders’ capacity to develop and improve their skills distinguishes them from their followers. So there should be a proper plan for continuous improvement, growth, and learning. To achieve these requires a lot of determination, self-discipline, and consistency. 

 

4. THE LAW OF NAVIGATION

“Anyone can steer a ship, but it takes a leader to chart the course.”

-John C. Maxwell

 

People depend on leaders, so leaders need to effectively navigate their way through life. This is the next step where you have to navigate your business or organization through the challenges and obstacles to reach success. Leaders learn from past failures, successes and challenges then look ahead to see where conflicts and challenges may arise. With all of these in mind, leaders will anticipate the challenges and respond accordingly. This is determining what it will take to fulfil the vision.

 

5. THE LAW OF ADDITION

 “Inexperienced leaders are quick to lead before knowing anything about the people they intend to lead. But mature leaders listen, learn and then lead.”

-John C. Maxwell

 Being a leader means, adding value to others’ lives by serving them. To add value to others’ lives, firstly we should know about the people we are leading, find out their priorities, goals, dreams, and vision and then figure out what we can do to assist them in getting where they need to go.

 

6. THE LAW OF SOLID GROUND

The solid ground is a solid character, living with integrity, authenticity, and discipline, & avoiding breaking the trust of your followers. Trust is the foundation of leadership. If people don’t trust you then you have nothing to offer. Character is the source of trust. Trust can only be built by demonstrating character, competence, and connection consistently.

 

7. THE LAW OF RESPECT

People follow those leaders who are naturally stronger than themselves. Good leaders not only rely on talent but also respect. When people respect you as a friend means they love you. When they respect you as a person means they admire you. When they respect you as a leader means they follow you. So if people will lose respect for you, as a leader your influence over them will also disappear.

 

8. THE LAW OF INTUITION

“Whenever leaders face a problem, they automatically measure it and begin solving it using the Law of Intuition.”

-John C. Maxwell

 This is the complex part of leadership because it relies on facts, instincts, and many other changing factors like employee morale & relational dynamics. Leadership intuition is perception or inner thought to make a particular change in an organization or to know what to do at a particularly challenging time. Good leaders always have good intuitions. They can sense people’s attitudes. They can detect the chemistry of a team. They don’t need to sift through stats, read reports, or examine a balance sheet. They know the situation before they have all the facts. This intuition can be better through experience and growth.

 

9. THE LAW OF MAGNETISM

 This law states that who you surround yourself with is a mirror of who you are. So if you want to attract better people, become the kind of person you desire. The bottom line is that the better leader you become, the more magnetic your leadership will be.

 

10. THE LAW OF CONNECTION

“Leaders touch a heart before they ask for a hand.”

-John C. Maxwell

This is the most essential law because followers won’t move into action if they don’t feel emotionally connected to their leader. People won’t follow you until they are emotionally brought into the vision you are casting. So to connect with people you have to learn about them and value them. Don’t expect others to change themselves to follow you. You must change yourself to make the connection with them.

 

11. THE LAW OF THE INNER CIRCLE

A leader’s potential is determined by those closest to him. It is more similar to the law of magnetism but it states that you will begin to look like those with whom you surround yourself. So the people in the inner circle of the leader will determine the leader’s potential and strength. Firstly, as a leader increase your capacity and maximize your potential. Then must surround ourselves constantly with people we admire and respect; people we want to become like as we grow.

 

12. THE LAW OF EMPOWERMENT

“Leading well is not about enriching yourself – it’s about empowering others.”

-John C. Maxwell

 

This means only true and secure leaders give power to others and believe in their team. Those are the great and secure leaders who empower others rather than control them to gain respect, trust, and admiration from their followers. Secure leaders spend their time identifying leaders, building them up, giving them resources, responsibility, and authority, and then turning them loose to achieve.

 

13. THE LAW OF THE PICTURE

“Followers may doubt what their leaders say, but they usually believe what they do.”

-John C. Maxwell

This means people do what people see. Leaders always lead by example so when the appropriate actions will demonstrate by the leaders, their followers will mimic them and prosper.

 

14. THE LAW OF BUY-IN 

People buy into those leaders who have a vision and goals. They think that if a cause is compelling enough, people would naturally buy into it and follow. People don’t at first follow worthy causes. They follow worthy leaders who promote causes they can believe in.

 

15. THE LAW OF VICTORY

True leaders always have a passion to win and they push through challenging circumstances to gain victories. There are four aspects of a team victory, diversity of skills, unity of vision, dedication to victory, and raising others to their potential.

 

16. THE LAW OF THE BIG MO 

The law of momentum states that momentum is the leaders’ best friend. If a leader wants to create change they need to create momentum. A leader’s responsibility is to establish and maintain momentum. To do this, one must assess what is working, what needs to change, and what opportunities exist. Simplest tasks become impossible if there is no momentum but with momentum, obstacles appear small, the future looks bright and troubles seem inconsequential.

 

17. THE LAW OF PRIORITIES

Prioritizing means knowing what’s important and how everything relates to the overall vision. True leaders prioritize things by keeping 3R’s (Requirement, Return, Reward) in mind. Focusing on what is most important is so much more effective than being busy. When we properly prioritize how we spend our time, it will always set us on a course for success. When we don’t prioritize our time, we will often look back wondering where it all went.

 

18. THE LAW OF SACRIFICE 

Leadership requires sacrifice, without sacrifice, there is no improvement. There is no success without sacrifice. Every person who has achieved any success in life has made sacrifices to do so. Your rights decrease as your responsibilities increase. The greater your vision and mission, the greater sacrifices you must make. Leaders sacrifice themselves to gain opportunities and succeed.

 

 19. THE LAW OF TIMING 

Maxwell said the wrong action at the wrong time leads to disaster. The right action at the wrong time brings resistance. The wrong action at the right time is a mistake. However, the right action at the right time results in success. As we develop our leadership abilities, we have to go beyond simply knowing how to lead. We must also learn to recognize the appropriate moment and time to act.

 

 20. THE LAW OF EXPLOSIVE GROWTH 

If you work on yourself, you can only succeed personally. But if you work on your team, your organization can achieve explosive growth. The key to experiencing massive growth is not leading followers but leading other leaders. 

 

21. THE LAW OF LEGACY

The final law of this book is the law of legacy. Leaders will be remembered by the legacy they left behind. How someone lives now is what ends up determining what they leave behind in the future. To develop your leadership legacy, know your purpose in life and don’t wait for tomorrow, start from today.

In my opinion, this book is a genuine learning tool. Each law is like a ready-made tool to help you achieve your dreams and to be used to add value to other people’s lives. As you explore the Laws you’ll discover that you can put some of them into practice extremely successfully while using others as learning opportunities.



Author: Ms. Mariam
Head of Research & Communication

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