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The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader: Becoming the Person Others Will Want to Follow

4.14  ·  Rating Details ·  2,959 Ratings  ·  166 Reviews
In the tradition of his CBA bestseller "The 21 Irrefutable laws of Leadership" and his sell-out seminars, author John C. Maxwell now provides a concise, accessible leadership book that helps readers become more effective leaders from the inside out. Daily readings highlight twenty-one essential leadership qualities and include "Reflecting On It" and "Bringing It Home" sect ...more
Hardcover, 160 pages
Published June 22nd 1999 by Nelson Books
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May 31, 2011 Rebecca rated it liked it
Recommended to Rebecca by: Ilene Mecham
I'm not a great leader: I speak my mind too freely, I'm not good at delegating, and sometimes I have a hard time hiding the fact that certain people irritate me. Believe me, I know my own weaknesses (most people do.) and I'm working on improving them.

While this book was chalk full of good qualities to have, I couldn't help but feel like I was sitting in some motivational seminar where someone was trying to sell me something. (I dislike the disingenuity of motivational speakers. Rather than feeli
Dec 26, 2013 Tihomir rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: leadership
It was one of the most interesting book on leadership I read. It contains a lot of useful and practical lessons which will help me to develop my leadership habits. Thanks Mr. Maxwell!
Estevo Raposo
El ameno estilo de John C.Maxwell hace que el libro se pueda escuchar casi de un tirón, pero el propio autor nos recomienda al principio, con muy buen criterio, no hacerlo: está pensado para entrar en nuestra vida por “sedimentación”, poco a poco. Una cualidad al día es un buen ritmo. Aunque fue escrito después de The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, debería ser leído antes, por ser más directo y básico.

Las 21 cualidades que Maxwell disecciona en este libro, con consejos prácticos y directos p
Tony Jr.
Feb 14, 2015 Tony Jr. rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2015
Great book I love even more than the insanely popular book 21 Irrefutable laws of leadership written by the same author. In short, to the point chapters, Maxwell does an excellent job of capturing the heart of each quality.

Each quality is as follows:
1. Character
2. Charisma
3. Commitment
4. Competence
5. Courage
6. Competence
7. Discernment
8. Focus
9. Generosity
10. Initiative
11. Listening
12. Passion
13. Positive Attitude
14. Problem Solving
15. Relationships
16. Responsibility
17. Security
Jul 18, 2011 Gbello added it
I find the book really helpful...for a busy person this book is a quick read, has great stories of people that are inspiring, it is to the point with the advise on what each quality is and what you need to know on how to improve for each if you need to improve on them, and you can always go back and reflect on this information. Being a leader is constant improvement and maintaining leadership is just constant.
Kim Tong Lim
Feb 13, 2013 Kim Tong Lim rated it really liked it
It has provided me guidance as I lead a team in my job. It contains several gems of ideas and qualities which we should adopt.

Of the 21 indispensable qualities, Character was in the first chapter of the book. Character comes with it Integrity and strong moral values. Several major corporate scandals invariably boil down to leaders who were of dubious or unethical characters. Character also refers to a strong will to stand up for your values and to take courage to defend the weak or right the unj
Bill Nelson
Mar 01, 2015 Bill Nelson rated it it was amazing
I am an optimistic thinker and have studied the characteristics of successful people for many years. From books like How to Win Friends and Influence People, to The Magic of Thinking Big, and Good to Great, I have read quite a few. I have listened to Tony Robbins, Paul Harvey, Zig Ziglar and countless motivational speakers. With all this background knowledge, I thought I had it down. That is, until I read The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader by John Maxwell.

This is an amazing first read fo
David J. Scott
Nov 29, 2013 David J. Scott rated it it was amazing
I'm not even done with it and I've been amazed by what it has been teaching me. Although the book is simplistic in style and open to many types of leadership, it poses many good points on how to be a leader in good and bad times.

What I've learned most is when he tells a story about a leader that achieved great things because of their intuition, drive, passion, listening, and so on and so forth. It allowed me to see deeper into the process of Sam Walton of Wal-Mart and Oprah Winfrey and how they
Alex Timberman
Oct 22, 2014 Alex Timberman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’m not sure how helpful self-help books really are. Lot of times, they say the things we want to hear, but don’t provide any lasting impressions, unlike the power of a good novel.

But for what it is, this was an interesting book. I like his ethical Christian perspective and he put in a lot of research to turn out an easy to read book on leadership. He goes through 21 traits of leadership with some historical examples along with a short summary of the trait at the end of each chapter. He recomme
Sep 17, 2008 Jason rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Execs., managers, etc
Recommended to Jason by: Fomer GM
I know, I know. A book about leadership and how great can that actually be. Well, pretty damn great in this case. The book is small (155 pgs) and the synopsis of the "qualities" are short, but what makes the book great is the common sense approach to a subject that some of us really use in everyday life. Whether you're a seasoned pro or a new manager this book will offer a great refresher course or a foundation for what great leadership really is: Developing effective communication.

I have been r
Jul 20, 2014 Quincy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Solid principles, Great book!

John Maxwell does a great job writing a book that connects with readers on multiple levels. He provides historical references of successful leaders who have embodied the traits and characteristics mentioned in each chapter. He further aligns each section with take aways that help the reader gain knowledge on how to incorporate proven methods and techniques to become a better leader.
Micah Grant
Mar 24, 2016 Micah Grant rated it it was amazing
Shelves: leadership
This was a quick read, even though he'd like you to take a week for each quality. I wanted to read through fast and see what it was like. I'm planning to take his advice in the book and see how I'm doing on each quality and work on the things i can to improve each one. Great advice in this one.
Dec 18, 2014 Jonathan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Valuable Wise Advice

It's just a really solid good book on leadership. I found it continually inspiring and uplifting. You can't walk away and not want to make a change as a leader...if you can...then maybe leadership just isn't for you.
Jan 20, 2015 Fred rated it really liked it
Great book with excellent examples of leaders that personify the qualities in each chapter. The one common theme here in all 21 qualities is that there is no substitute for hard work in achieving success. It's a fundamental message to teach your kids, co-workers, etc.
Fermin Quant
Jan 02, 2015 Fermin Quant rated it it was amazing
Very useful qualities to help develop yourself into a better leader. Good as a read and as a reference material for auto examination.
Nov 29, 2014 Nita rated it it was amazing
This is a great book to read. From this book we learn about the characteristics of being a leader.
Sylvie Bourgeois
Sep 27, 2014 Sylvie Bourgeois rated it really liked it
Great book! A book to refer to again and again!
A r a k Mc
Oct 05, 2012 A r a k Mc rated it really liked it
إهداء المدربة نورة الفليج. مُلهِم ويذكر ببعض اللفتات والمواقف المهمّة. تُعجبني الأمثلة الواقعية.
Stephanie Sanchez
Oct 19, 2016 Stephanie Sanchez rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed the book. It was pretty informative and broke down each quality and gave examples to substantiate it.
Oct 13, 2016 James rated it it was amazing
Probably my favorite of Maxwell's books. It contains enough of the helpful information but gets straight to the point. Definitely one to reread from time to time.
Jul 27, 2015 James rated it liked it
A solid introduction to leadership and the examination of the qualities thereof, but often too simplified for an advance study of the topic. If one is seeking a refresher on the topics or trying to look for trends in leadership, then this book is excellent at giving a starting point. It is well suited to classroom use for students examining or considering the differences between leadership and management, but may not be as in depth as some other readers would prefer.

Perhaps the biggest qualm wi
Jul 24, 2016 Charmin rated it really liked it
Shelves: leadership
Bite-size chapters of depth, reflection, and action steps.
It is a good opportunity to see what areas are strengths and which ones need more development. Character, charisma, communication, competence, courage, discernment, focus, generosity, initiative, listening, passion, positive attitude, problem-solving, relationships, responsibility, security, self-discipline, servant hood, teachability, vision.
1. Time and money spent to take you to the next level are the best investment you ca
Derek Neighbors
Dec 27, 2015 Derek Neighbors rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A great companion to Maxwell's 21 Laws of Leadership. You can read this in one sitting, but it will take a lifetime to grasp it's content fully. A chapter a week might be a better approach. The 21 Qualities:

1. CHARACTER: Be a Piece of the Rock
2. CHARISMA: The First Impression Can Seal the Deal
3. COMMITMENT: It Separates Doers from Dreamers
4. COMMUNICATION: Without It You Travel Alone
5. COMPETENCE: If you Build It, They Will Come
6. COURAGE: One Person with Courage Is a Majority
Aug 16, 2013 John rated it really liked it
Yet another openly ghost-written John Maxwell business book. The writing is simplistic, the examples dated and naive, frequent references are made to other books available from the author, and most annoying of all are the references to jargony names of the "Laws" he's defined in other books.

That said, even with all its stylistic flaws the book's content seems remarkably useful to developing leadership. The 21 chapters each describe a character trait successful leaders must possess. "Maxwell" enc
مشاري الإبراهيم
I'm close to leading a group of very talented people and picked up this book in hopes of understanding (how) to successfully lead.

This book is basically a recycling of qualities and virtues that we have heard, and have been hearing, since childhood about how to be a good person. e.g.

* Listen to others
* Be generous
* Be passionate
* Prioritize

I closed the book half way through. Because all of what I read was common sense and doesn't take a genius to figure.

I think the value add isn't just listing
Mar 17, 2008 Clackamas rated it really liked it
Recommended to Clackamas by: Work reading list
I've had to read so many of these books for work and absolutely hate them. That said, this one was better than most. It posed pretty much the same ideas as the others, but it didn't try to compare workers to mice, fish, or any other animals. In other words, the reason I gave it four stars wasn't so much because it was great, but because it didn't talk down to the reader as much as most of the others of the genre. It also reinforced my belief that there are way too many people in leadership posit ...more
Aug 10, 2007 William rated it it was ok
I found some of this book to be contradictory,and I didn't really care for many of the examples. However, some of the book was good and thought provoking. I think it just seemed too much like Maxwell had been told he had to have 21 characteristics, and he was really stretching to get them. I also don't think you should quote yourself in a book about leadership... I mean, who is John Maxwell? I had never heard of him before I read this book, and I haven't heard of him since. Perhaps I just don't ...more
Darren Brown
Mar 04, 2016 Darren Brown rated it really liked it
Some good fundamental business concepts but all are in isolation in short chapters so there's no real flow from one theme to the next. It has been written to be read one chapter a day or week, with time to reflect on the concepts in between, but I found this approach didn't work for me. I'd simply keep forgetting about the book for a while and moving on to other things. All in all, some good concepts to be found.
J.E. Raley
Jan 11, 2015 J.E. Raley rated it liked it
A quick read, some of the information basic and common sense, others a bit more thought provoking. I was a big fan of several quotes he utilized to drive a point further home or enlighten a topic. While I don't consider myself a leader (per say) I think this is a decent book at helping anyone work on gaining a but of self confidence should they need it or help hone in on skills that may not be used to full potential.
Ernesto Osorno
Nov 06, 2014 Ernesto Osorno rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: leadership
John Maxwell en este libro da una serie de tips para el desarrollo de aptitudes que ayudarán a las personas a ser un mejor líder, aunque no necesariamente se encuentran relacionadas a líderes, también ayudan a tener un mejor desenvolvimiento y empatía con las personas que nos rodean.

Considero que es una lectura amena y recomendada para cualquier persona que busque desarrollar aptitudes para una mejor convivencia con las personas de su entorno.
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John C. Maxwell is an internationally recognized leadership expert, speaker, and author who has sold over 16 million books. His organizations have trained more than 2 million leaders worldwide. Dr. Maxwell is the founder of EQUIP and INJOY Stewardship Services. Every year he speaks to Fortune 500 companies, international government leaders, and audiences as diverse as the United States Military Ac ...more
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“If we did all the things we were capable of doing,” he once said, “we would literally astound ourselves.” 2 likes
“Never “for the sake of peace and quiet” deny your own experience or convictions. —Dag Statesman and Nobel Peace Prize Winner” 1 likes
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