Being a great leader is all about having a genuine willingness and a true commitment to lead others to achieve a common vision and goals through positive influence. No leader can ever achieve anything great or long-lasting all alone. Teamwork goes hand in hand with leadership. Leadership is about people-and for people.
John C. Maxwell is widely considered to be one of the world's top leadership thinkers. Below are some of his best quotations from his books to inspire you to be a great leader, too.
1. "A great leader's courage to fulfill his vision comes from passion, not position."
2. "Leadership is not about titles, positions or flowcharts. It is about one life influencing another."
3. "A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way."
4. "Leaders must be close enough to relate to others, but far enough ahead to motivate them."
5. "A leader who produces other leaders multiplies their influences."
6. "A successful person finds the right place for himself. But a successful leader finds the right place for others.
7. "Real leadership is being the person others will gladly and confidently follow."
8. "When the leader lacks confidence, the followers lack commitment."
9. "The leader's Attitude is like a thermostat for the place she works. If her attitude is good, the atmosphere is pleasant, and the environment is easy to work in. But if her attitude is bad, the temperature is insufferable."
10. "If you wouldn't follow yourself, why should anyone else?"
11. "Great leaders always seem to embody two seemingly disparate qualities. They are both highly visionary and highly practical."
12. "The higher you want to climb, the more you need leadership. The greater the impact you want to make, the greater your influence needs to be."
13. "If you can't influence people, then they will not follow you. And if people won't follow, you are not a leader. That's the Law of Influence."
14. "Anyone can steer the ship, but it takes a leader to chart the course. Leaders who are good navigators are capable of taking their people just about anywhere."
15. "If you are a leader, the true measure of your success is not getting people to work. It's not getting people to work hard. It is getting people to work hard together. That takes commitment."
16. "If you want to be a leader, the good news is that you can do it. Everyone has the potential, but it isn't accomplished overnight. It requires perseverance."
17. "If you really want to be an uncommon leader, you're going to have to find a way to get much of your vision seen, implemented, and added to by others."
18. "Managers work with processes-leaders work with people."
19. "Everything rises and falls on leadership."
20. "Good leaders know when to display emotions and when to delay them."
21. "Do you know the difference between leaders, followers, and losers? Leaders stretch with challenges. Followers struggle with challenges. Losers shrink from challenges."
22. "Most good leaders want the perspective of people they trust."
23. "To lead any way other than by example, we send a fuzzy picture of leadership to others. If we work on improving ourselves first and make that our primary mission, then others are more likely to follow."
24. "All true leaders have learned to say no to the good in order to say yes to the best."
25. "The best leaders are humble enough to realize their victories depend upon their people."
26. "Leaders see everything with a leadership bias. Their focus is on mobilizing people and leveraging resources to achieve their goals rather than on using their own individual efforts. Leaders who want to succeed maximize every asset and resource they have for the benefit of their organization. For that reason, they are continually aware of what they have at their disposal."
27. "It's not the position that makes the leader; it's the leader that makes the position."
28. "When leaders fail to empower others, it is usually due to three main reasons: 1. Desire for Job Security 2. Resistance to Change 3. Lack of Self-Worth."
29. "When people respect you as a person, they admire you. When they respect you as a friend, they love you. When they respect you as a leader, they follow you."
30. "Leadership has less to do with position than it does disposition."
31. "If you want to be the best leader you can possibly be, no matter how much or how little natural leadership talent you possess, you need to become a serving leader."
32. "Success for the leader is a single victory. However, when the protege experiences success, it becomes a double win."
33. "The challenge of leadership is to create change and facilitate growth."
34. "The measure of a leader is not the number of people who serve him but the number of people he serves."
35. "The rewards leaders give are counterbalanced by the results that their people give in return."
36. "The bottom line in leadership isn't how far we advance ourselves but how far we advance others."
37. "A leader with confidence is a leader who brings out positive changes in people."
38. "As a leader, you will never get ahead until your people are behind you."
39. "Leaders who are effective are leaders who are disciplined in their daily lives."
40. "There are five nonnegotiable characteristics that every effective leader must have: a sense of calling, an ability to communicate, creativity in problem solving, generosity, and consistency."
41. "A leader is great, not because of his or her power, but because of his or her ability to empower others."
42. "The respect that leadership must have requires that one's ethics be without question. A leader not only stays above the line between right and wrong, he stays well clear of the 'gray areas.'"
43. "Your ultimate goal as a leader should be to work hard enough and strategically enough that you have more than enough to give and share with others."
44. "As a leader, you don't earn any points for failing in a noble cause. You don't get credit for being 'right' as you bring the organization to a halt. Your success is measured by your ability to actually take the people where they need to go. But you can do that only if the people first buy into you as a leader. That's the reality of the Law of Buy-In."