In this 21 part series, based on John Maxwell’s book The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, I’m taking you on a journey towards better leadership. I share with you my own leadership lessons and insights. As a John Maxwell Team Member I’ll be happy to deliver a transformational leadership training for your team or organization. See the details below.
Part 11 of 21: The Law of Inner Circle
The Law of Inner Circle: A leader’s potential is determined by those closest to him. ~ John C. Maxwell
Nobody does anything great alone. Great leaders surround themselves with great people. Looking back at my life, I must say that every major achievement in my life was accomplished not because I worked hard or because I was so great, but because of the quality of people I was surrounded with.
Even now, as I’m a face of my business, my team makes sure that all the tasks are done, all the pieces are running well – from website, through social media, client care, communication, client appointments and more.
As Mother Teresa observed, ‘You can do what I cannot do. I can do what you cannot do. Together we can do great things.‘ That is the power of the Law of the Inner Circle. Every leader needs a team of people.
Most people create an inner circle of people. However, they are usually not strategic in doing so. We naturally tend to surround ourselves with either people we like or people with whom we are comfortable. Few people give enough thought to how those closest to them impact their effectiveness or leadership potential.
To practice the Law of the Inner Circle, you must be intentional in your relationship building. You must give thought to the accomplishment of your mission and the success of the people who follow you. Only if you reach your potential as a leader do your people have a chance to reach their potential.
How to find the right people for your Inner Circle?
- Do they have high influence with others? By bringing people who have influence with others, you will automatically increase your influence. Now you will have people you influence as well as people they influence. This is a smart move. To multiply your own leadership, hire great leaders.
- Do they bring a complementary gift to the table? Bring a few key people to your team who possess strengths in the areas of your weaknesses. If everyone in your organization is good at systems and structure, who is going to communicate with people? If everybody is great at customer care, who will close contracts with key business partners? You need people with different strengths and skills to create great results.
- Do they hold a strategic position in the organization? How important are they for your team or organization? Can you do well without them? They’re just cutting from your profits. Are they invaluable to you? Keep and cherish them.
- Do they add value to me and to the organization? We discussed this in the Law of Addition. You need people with proven track record as assets to your organization or team.
- Do they positively impact other inner circle members? People you hire should be a good fit with one another. They need to compliment each other in their skill set and talents. In addition to that, they also need to make one another better, to raise one another’s game. Encourage one another. Share information and wisdom to support and challenge each other.
There are 3 steps to growing your inner circle:
1. Identify the right people
Use the checklist above to identify the right people for your inner circle and hire them. Someone once told me that the key to building a successful team is to be slow to hire and quick to fire. I’ve seen many out there doing it the other way around. I guess it’s our culture that makes it hard to fire the wrong people. Is it time for you to step into freedom as an entrepreneur, manager, leader? Hiring and keeping wrong people on your team will hurt you, your organization and your results (and eventually your profits). I personally like to select my inner circle from within. I tend to choose people I know, like and trust. People with proven track record. I must have previous positive experience with you before I make you part of my team.
2. Develop your inner circle
One of the principles I always felt strong about is to invest in ‘my people’. Training and development are key components of my success in building strong teams that perform on high level. Invest in people, train them, encourage and motivate them and help them move to their next level. When should you stop developing your inner circle? Never! Keep in mind that the moment you stop investing in your people, you start walking backward. Make it a priority to improve your people to keep your performance strong. Spend extra time with them to mentor them and develop relationships. Give them extra responsibility and have higher expectations from them. Give them more credit when things go well. Never forget that leader’s potential is determined by those closest to him.Improve your #team to keep your performance strong. #leadershiptip Click To Tweet
3. Become the best leader you can
If you want to increase your capacity and maximize your potential as a leader, you MUST become the best leader you can. Remember the Law of Magnetism – you will get not who you want, but who you ARE. If you grow, your people will want to grow. If you lead well, your people will want to lead well. Improve yourself and you will improve your people.
If you are ready to improve as a leader, I’d be honored to help you on this journey.
If you’re an individual, you will want to join my Impact Academy, where I work with individuals from around the globe helping them to improve their leadership and results.
If you’re part of a team and want to step on this journey alongside of your team, contact me here to let me know about your team’s needs. I’ll be happy to offer a customized training based on your team’s needs.
This article is part of a 21-part leadership series.
To your success,
PS: To gain even more insights into leadership, get a complimentary access to my Leadership Breakthrough eCourse below.