July 29, 2023

What I Learned At The Feet of John Maxwell

Earlier this year, I had the opportunity to personally speak in front of, and then to learn from, John Maxwell. As Real Estate Leaders, you are busy. So I’d like to share my personal “Cliff Notes” from my time with John Maxwell. I found his wisdom invaluable in my business and trust you will as well.

First – John spoke to us about “Leadershift”. He said, “Difficult times separate the players & pretenders.” We can all relate to that in Today’s Real Estate Market. John then shared 6 Lessons to adapt and succeed. (You’ll find them in my notes below.)

Secondly – I had the (nerve-wracking!) pleasure of being one of the main speakers at the event John keynoted. He arrived 2 hours early. Which meant he was unexpectedly in the front row as I spoke. (Good thing I had a long dress on, so you couldn’t see my knees shaking!)

Following my talk, John sat me down next to him, pulled his cell phone out and scrolled through the screenshots he took of my slides.THAT was REALLY good. This part here was excellent. And this part here – well I am going to put that in my next book. I won’t give you royalties, but I’ll give you credit.” (LOL!)

John may say that to many people, AND I took this as a great encouragement that the message of leadership empowerment we deliver at Ops Boss® Coaching is worthy and needed. The talk that day was for Mega Agents. The Title was “How To Build An Operational Powerhouse” and the topic was actually about the evolution every agent must make from “Superstar Salesperson” to “Brilliant Business Boss” to “Lifegiving Leader”.

I’d love to bring that talk to YOUR office or region, followed by our “10 Secrets of a Mega EA” class. I passionately know it will help you recruit, retain and grow your productivity. Let’s chat! You can schedule a quick call here.

Now, here are my personal notes:

  • Add value to leaders who multiply value to others.
  • Am I going to wing it or work for it?
  • Difficult times separate the players & pretenders.


1. Continually learn, unlearn and relearn. (This is a circular cycle)

  • What worked then does not work now.
  • Leaders see MORE than others see BEFORE others see it.
  • Managers don’t want change in the business, Leaders see the need for change.
  • HBR Study: You only apply what you learn for the next 5 years. Therefore you must constantly be learning.
  • The top 3 competencies in business today: Adaptability, Learning Agility, Communication Skills

The Cycle of Success

  1. Test – Try lots of new things. This keeps you continually on The edge and that is what allows you to see things before others do
  2. Fail – If you test a lot, you’ll fail a lot. If you fail a lot, you’ll learn a lot. In order to increase your failure rate, increase your testing rate (BOOM!)
  3. Learn – Failure is your greatest teacher. The fruit of failing is learning. The value of learning results in improving.
  4. Improve – Ask how the learning can improve your business and your life. Then take action. Don’t re-enter until you improve. Otherwise you are the stupid guy banging his head against the ceiling saying “just keep getting up”.
  5. Re-Enter. Get back in the game. Take action, Your tendency is to freeze. You have to take action to stay in the game. When you re-enter after improvement, you cycle UP (versus cycling circularly). Then you start back at testing, but are leveled up.

Then Rinse and Repeat

2. Value yesterday, but live in today.

  • We over exaggerate yesterday, overestimate tomorrow and we undervalue today.
  • Whatever you’re doing has to be the best you can do TODAY.
  • “My favorite book is the one I am writing now.”
  • John’s next book will be “High Road Leadership”.
  • When I don’t fall in love with what I am doing right now, I don’t do my best.
  • When you don’t want to do it any more, you’re not any good at it. And you might as well quit because you already have.

3. Rely on speed, thrive on timing.

  • Act on what you see before others see it and act.
  • Get started first.
  • The fastest person doesn’t always win the race. It’s the person who starts first.
  • What can you do differently to set yourself apart? (If they stop, then start. If they start, then stop.)

4. Live in today, but think about tomorrow.

  • Because the future arrives unannounced.
  • Go into the room and think like the client will think, not like you will think. Talk about and ask about what is important to THEM.
  • Nightmare = Big Dream + Bad Team
  • It’s not the dream that determines your success, it’s your team.

Action Attraction

  • We overestimate belief and underestimate action. 
  • Example: “if you believe, you can achieve”. 
  • We even write songs about it. “I believe I can fly”. 
  • No you can’t! That’s BS!
  • You need clarity about what you want and who you want to do it with. But that’s not enough.
  • You need to take action. There’s no action attraction without action.

5. Move forward courageously in the midst of uncertainty.

  • Don’t freeze.
  • Life expands or shrinks in proportion to our courage.
  • Fear or faith. In difficult times we follow the one that is the strongest. (Note to self – Work on your faith so it becomes a reflex. Faith comes through taking action.)
  • If you find out you can’t do something (ex during Covid), what Can you do?
  • Everything worthwhile is uphill. You can’t have uphill hopes and downhill habits.
  • “Waiting for the storm to pass” is a downhill habit.

6. Realize that today’s best will not meet tomorrow’s challenge.

(Note to self: This requires CANI. Constant Never Ending Improvement.)

  • You have to keep changing to get better. 
  • Go where you’ve never gone, do what you’ve never done.

Related Posts

Energize & Elevate: Crafting the Ultimate Team Retreat

Energize & Elevate: Crafting the Ultimate Team Retreat

5 Insights about Cyber Fraud from a U.S. Secret Service Agent

5 Insights about Cyber Fraud from a U.S. Secret Service Agent

Open Sesame – Eleven Ideas To Level Up Your Open House Results

Open Sesame – Eleven Ideas To Level Up Your Open House Results

Outshine the Rest: Help Us Find The Winner!

Outshine the Rest: Help Us Find The Winner!