10 Steps to Reaching Your Leadership Potential

Based on John Maxwell’s The Success Journey, here are 10 key strategies to up-leveling your leadership potential.

1. Chose a Life of Growth

When you sincerely dedicate yourself to continual growth, you keep moving forward.

As soon as you think you can coast or rest or just maintain what you have already achieved, that is when you start sliding backwards.

2. Growing Today

Procrastination is the death of ambition and dreams. Someday is not a day of the week and growth is not automatic.

Growth today will provide a better tomorrow and growth is your responsibility – if you don’t take that responsibility, growth will never happen.

3. Be Teachable

“It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts”.

John Wooden, former UCLA basketball coach said this. He recognized that the greatest obstacle to growth isn’t ignorance, it is knowledge.

When we think we know it all, we become unteachable and can no longer grow or improve.

4. Focus on Self-Development, Not Self-Fulfillment

Self-fulfillment is about feeling good. With self- development, feeling good is a byproduct, not a goal.

Self-development is a higher calling, it’s the development of your potential so that you can attain the purpose for which you were created.

5. Never Stay Satisfied with Current Accomplishments

Thinking that you have arrived when you accomplish a goal has the same effect as believing you know it all.

It takes away your desire to learn. Successful people know that wins and losses are both temporary.

So no matter how successful you are today, don’t get complacent. Stay hungry and don’t settle into the comfort zone.

6. Be a Continual Learner

To keep moving, become a perpetual learner. You’ll have to carve out time for it.

As Henry Ford said, “It’s been my observation that most successful people get ahead during the time other people waste.” Learning something every day is the essence of being a continual learner.

7. Concentrate on a Few Major Themes

Give your time and energy only to the themes at the heart of your life.

Keep your focus narrow. Where you focus your attention will depend on your purpose, how you wish to help others and what it means for you to reach your potential.

8. Develop a Plan for Growth

The key to this life is developing a plan: Plan your work and work your plan.

Earl Nightingale says “If a person will spend one hour a day on the same subject for five years, that person will be an expert on that subject.” How you go about it does not matter, but do it daily.

9. Pay the Price

Growth requires discipline, there’s constant change and risks and it can be lonely.

But growth is always worth the price you pay because the alternative is a life of unfulfilled potential.

President Theodore Roosevelt stated: “There has not yet been a person in our history who led a life of ease whose name is worth remembering.”

10. Find a Way to Apply What You Learn

In some way apply what you learn every day to turn it into a habit instead of a wish. Do this for 21 days and the habit is yours. As you accumulate growth this way, you never stagnate or backslide.