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Everything is changing – whether it’s the challenges facing your industry, uncertainty in the markets, or changing consumer patterns. The fact is, with businesses and industries moving at a rapid pace, the same old same old approach is totally inappropriate and won’t cut it anymore.

At the end of my Grow Your Business program – on weekends, on Sky News Business Channel – I always finish off by saying “if nothing changes, nothing changes”. Yes, I know it is a cliché, but it is the provocative advice I offer for many of us who are weighed down by complacency.

It is an ironic, but many of us think leadership is the preoccupation of the likes of executives of big organisations; but the truth is, leadership is needed when you lead a small business, a sporting team, a classroom or a family.

But wait, there’s more.

We need leadership skills when we deal with clients. In fact, we are in a leadership position when someone comes through the business door. We clearly have to be great with our product knowledge; but we also have to be aware that these people, regardless of what you provide, want to be led to a better position.

So, how does someone engage with leadership?

The first step is to admit that you have a leadership inadequacy. But how do you know that?

Well, if you have trouble influencing your teenage sons and daughters, your Gen Y staff or family, or even your partner in a relationship, you have to be realistic that it could be your leadership that is letting you down.

Okay, if you can be honest with yourself that your leadership quality could be the missing link in your life and your business, then don’t delay – start changing what you are currently doing.

If you are not reading books on leadership or listening to CDs on the subject when you are driving, then you are misallocating your precious time.

In Dubai two years ago, I was MC at a conference where the US leadership guru, John Maxwell, was speaking. He has penned a number of books that have been on the best seller lists of the Wall Street Journal and New York Times, and he has sold more than, wait for it, 19 million books!

My favourite is The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership. The great Stephen Covey, the author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, said of Maxwell’s book: “It will change the way you live and lead.”

To me Maxwell’s greatest advice was: “Leadership is developed daily, not in a day.” When that happens, you change permanently and the influence you want to have on your customers, your staff and your family becomes more effective.

By the way, in late June this year Maxwell is coming to Australia. For anyone who would love to hear him speak, he will be in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.

For more details, click here.

If you want to be a leader, don’t miss Maxwell.

Published on: Friday, June 17, 2011

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