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Developing the Leaders Around You: How to Help Others Reach Their Full Potential Paperback – October 4, 2005

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson; 1 edition (October 4, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0785281118
  • ISBN-13: 978-0785281115
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.4 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #32,074 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

John C. Maxwell is a #1 New York Times bestselling author, coach, and speaker who has sold more than 24 million books in fifty languages. Maxwell was identified as the most popular leadership expert in the world by Inc. magazine in 2014. He is the founder of the John Maxwell Company, the John Maxwell Team, and EQUIP. He can be followed at For more information visit

More About the Author

John C. Maxwell is an internationally recognized leadership expert, speaker, coach, and author who has sold over 19 million books. Dr. Maxwell is the founder of EQUIP and the John Maxwell Company, organizations that have trained more than 5 million leaders worldwide. Every year he speaks to Fortune 500 companies, international government leaders, and organizations as diverse as the United States Military Academy at West Point, the National Football League, and the United Nations. A New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Business Week best-selling author, Maxwell has written three books which have each sold more than one million copies: The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, Developing the Leader Within You, and The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader. You can find him at and follow him at

Customer Reviews

I really enjoyed this book, it was very well written and funny.
Michael Lippert
I've referenced this book quite a few times since I've completed it a few months ago.
Johnson Theory
I would recommend this book to anyone looking to develop this leadership skills.
Jennifer Murphy

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

34 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Stosh D. Walsh on January 24, 2001
Format: Hardcover
The basic premise of this book is that you can multiply the efficiency of your organization by devoting time to developing the potential leaders around you. The idea is that once you commit to developing potential leaders, they in turn become leaders who can develop other leaders, and as the number of leaders grows, productivity increases. The book provides guidelines as to how to identify those individuals who have the potential for leadership, and then gives instruction on how to develop them. The guidelines and instruction Maxwell gives can be summarized as follows: choose the individuals who are the most willing to grow and learn new things as your potential leaders, and grow them by investing time in them, empowering them for success by delegating wisely and providing counsel. Maxwell views the development as a nurturing process, very relationally based. His ideas are sound (though I have oversimplified them here in the interest of brevity), and his examples and descriptions thorough. There is a somewhat general nature to his examples in some cases, mostly because the book is written for leaders of all types (coaches, supervisors, CEOs, parents...) and it is meant to be universal in scope. The book does contain a wealth of information, (I must have marked 10-12 pages in order to refer to them later) and gives the reader an opportunity for self-assessment with a questionnaire. Additionally, the universal quality of his principles enables individual application to unique situations, which is perhaps the most valuable quality of this fine book.
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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By on January 24, 2004
Format: Hardcover
John C. Maxwell has made a name for himself as an authority on leadership, landing on bestseller lists in both the Christian and general markets. That's quite an accomplishment, and it's one he has legitimately earned. In addition to writing more than two-dozen books, he has established several organizations geared toward training and equipping leaders and has developed numerous ancillary products like tape series, handbooks and manuals, and curriculum materials. In short, he's an expert in his field and one of the best communicators out there.

That said, you should know that Maxwell mines the wealth of information and resources he has amassed and recycles it all to create new books --- which means that one Maxwell book often overlaps into another one, which overlaps into another one, and so on. Longtime readers of Maxwell are well aware of this, having discovered a significant amount of familiar material in the context of information that's genuinely new. He's often criticized for this, but he still manages to sell a whole lot of books, so I suspect it isn't as much of a problem as his critics would like to believe.

In DEVELOPING THE LEADERS AROUND YOU, Maxwell provides both inspirational and practical assistance for leaders who are committed to helping others reach their leadership potential. In trademark Maxwell style, the author gets his point across by making the most of reader-friendly features like assessment tests, charts, cartoons, sports analogies, and mnemonic devices like original acronyms (such as RISE, Rewards Indicating Staff Expectations). He also sprinkles the text with well-chosen quotations --- some profound, some funny, but all of them relevant to the topic at hand.
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29 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Robert Morris HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on March 1, 2002
Format: Hardcover
There is nothing original in this book but, as with other books produced by Maxwell, it is well-organized and well-written. Also timely. Maxwell focuses on three key objectives: Developing leadership within one's self (discussed in greater depth in his book Developing the Leader Within You), developing leadership within associates, and thereby maximizing the potential of all human assets within any organization, regardless of its size or nature. Maxwell has a tendency to re-cycle essentially the same ideas from one book to the next but all of them are sound. My own opinion is that the scope and depth of Noel Tichy's The Leadership Engine are greater and hence more valuable than Maxwell's in this volume. However, not damning with faint praise, this is a book which will probably be well-received by middle managers who are encouraged to read it by their supervisors. As for those supervisors, I think the severely limited time available to them for discretionary reading is best allocated elsewhere. My own recommendations to them include the aforementioned book by Tichy, Hamer's The Agenda, Buckingham and Coffman's First, Break All the Rules, O'Toole's Leading Change, Fitz-enz's The ROI of Human Capital, and The Essential Drucker.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Eddie on February 27, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This book is what I consider the second step in developing an awesome team (the first being "Developing The Leader Within You"). Maxwell ignites an inner pep-rally that will motivate you to surround yourself with "leaders" to strengthen your goal as leader. As he says, "A leader thinking he's leading with no one following is simply taking a walk." So get this book and get a clue!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Michael Erisman on October 31, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Books on leadership are a dime a dozen these days, and often they start blending together. However, John Maxwell has put together some great insights into leadership that are often taken for granted or not well described.

The book starts with a solid question for any leader; "Am I Raising up Potential Leaders?". What makes this focus important is the fact that too often leaders focus on leading for results, not for future leadership. An important distinction.

Another aspect of the book looks at the ripple effects of leaders. True leaders are able to attract potential leaders because; Leaders think like them; Leaders express feelings that other leader's sense; Leaders create an environment that attracts potential leaders; Leaders are not threatened by people with great potential. The author lays out what happens when strong leaders are not selected. They in turn hire people with less leadership skills than they have, and so on. The organization as a whole suffers as a result of this domino effect.

Leaders who mentor potential leaders multiply their effectiveness. While this sounds simple, it is rare. "There is no success without a successor" (Page 11). Leaders take others with them, or they are not true leaders but mere managers. Delegation is the most powerful tool a leader has. (Page 159) However, if delegation is so important then why do some leaders fail to delegate effectively? Some ideas are postulated here; Insecurity; Lack of Confidence in Others; Lack of Ability to Train Others; Lack of Time; etc. In my experience the most common of these aspects is a lack of confidence, as many so called leaders never take the final step of "giving complete authority" to others. This derails success and future potential.
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