Personal Reflection on Leadership Book Essay

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John Maxwell provides a practical guide for cultivating and optimizing leadership skills in The Five Levels of Leadership. A unique approach to leadership, in that it does not focus on any one theory, The Five Levels explains different types of leaders, explaining different situational and psychological variables that can impact leadership status or success. After each chapter of The Five Levels, Maxwell offers readers tips for how to develop the optimal mindset for expanding leadership potential and to reach the next stage of personal empowerment. Expanding spheres of influence means ultimately to reach beyond the self to create a legacy.

One of the most important takeaways from Maxwell’s book is that anyone can develop practical skills necessary to be an effective leader, even those who may never aim for the pinnacle. Anyone reading The Five Levels is either in a position of leadership and wants to improve their effectiveness or currently interested in becoming a leader. Thus, The Five Levels reads like a self-help book that includes tips and specific examples readers can relate to as they progress in their career. The first level of leadership refers to the roles that are officially conferred through a title. In other words, the first level of leadership is more like a manager who operates within the confines of rules and regulations rather than someone who cultivates and communicates a broader vision for the organization.

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Moving beyond titles, a leader can inspire trust and acquire followers through the development of specific personality traits and communication skills. Called the “Permission” level of leadership, Level Two is about relationship building and is therefore a critical stage. As a reader, I recognize myself at this stage of leadership and gained a lot from reading this and subsequent chapters to see how I can grow and become a stronger and more effective leader. Being liked, trusted, and valued remains important for higher level leaders, but it becomes increasingly important to take risks, be unafraid of failure or of not being liked, and to selectively empower others on our team. It is to the next levels of leadership, both level three and four, that I currently aspire to in my career.

Level three is about productivity and metrics, as the leader focuses on fulfilling specific goals by motivating a team to perform at a high level. As a change agent, a level three leader may….....

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Works Cited

Maxwell, John C. The Five Levels of Leadership. Orange, CA: Center Street.

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