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Connecting with People – Your 9 Steps

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Connecting with People: 9 Tenets of John Maxwell Leadership

So that you can get an overview, I will provide you first with the Influence Checklist for Connecting with people:

  1. Measure your current connection – Be aware of the overall STRENGTH of connection you have right now, with regard to your top people. Have you done some bonding experiences – i.e., have you had lunch or a coffee break together to chat? Recall that it’s up to you to initiate contact – so make some time & do it
  2. Connect at a really deep level– In order that you may truly get to know your co-workers and employees, you ought to do things together which are non-professional – whether it be camping, or a company picnic or skiing trip, arrange a retreat or getaway weekend. Be sure to include the spouses – the main thing is to bond, and find some “common ground” (common experiences)
  3. Communicate Your Vision to Others – Once you have built a solid foundation, it is now time to impart your vision, and what your hopes for the future are.  Hit the highlights, and discuss what your goals for the future are, what is to be gained, & include how the dream can be shaped, or expanded on – brainstorm with everyone (perhaps do group brainstorming during this conference/getaway)

John Maxwell leadership: Make a Difference

John Maxwell:  Leadership Tenets

Now, to influence others (and have a good outcome) there are certain basic tenets that John Maxwell has laid down.  He stipulates that first of all, it is essential that you BELIEVE what you share with another can

make a difference

Also, it is quite important that you be able to believe the person, or employee in your organization, can make a difference. And believe that the 2 of you together can

make a difference

Make a Difference: John Maxwell tenets Ok, now on to what the John Maxwell Connecting with People  nine steps are:

  1. Never Take People for Granted – Always try to make them feel appreciated, for their efforts
  2. Have a Make a Difference Mindset – This goes to what I mentioned, about believing that what you share with another can indeed make a difference, that you believe the other person can make a difference, & that together you can make a Big Difference
  3. Initiate Movement toward Them – that is, ensure you don’t make the mistake of falling out of touch with your employees, or with your clients & customers.  According to John Maxwell, there are many reasons why we fall out of touch — he comments that many leaders simply feel it is the duty of the follower, and not the leader, to make contact.  The opposite is the case.
  4. Look for Things in Common, so You can Form a Bond – If you studied Chapter 4 of John Maxwell’s Leadership book, Becoming a Person of Influence, then you’ve formed good listening habits. You understand that you need, first of all, to establish a connection with somebody by finding common ground; and certainly, you need to utilize some of those traits learned in Chapter 4 – i.e., strong eye contact, & not interrupting a person e.g. – You can make a difference as a strong, intuitive leader if you develop these habits.  Just remember to try seeing things from another’s viewpoint
  5. Recognize & Respect Differences – whether the differences are cultural, or personality differences, the challenge is to respect the differences, listen well, & truly Get to Know the person on a Deep level – it is so worthwhile, connecting with employees.  there are *4 distinct types of personality – 1) Sanguine, 2) Melancholy, 3) Phlegmatic, 4) Choleric
  6. Find the Key to Other People’s Lives – This is an important tenet, & must be used with caution .  To understand what another person is “all about” you want to achieve 2 things:  1) Find out what the person has achieved, to understand his mind, and 2) To discover what is in  his heart, find out what he aspires to  (recall to use this wisely, and only for his benefit)
  7. Communicate From the Heart – Find some common ground with your employee (or co-worker) and have a lengthy discussion. Now that you’ve uncovered what’s important to him (#6), you’ll want to share what your dreams are – really speak from the heart – be authentic & genuine.
  8. Share Common Experiences – It is not good enough to find common ground & communicate (& listen) well.  Indeed, you must do something to CEMENT the relationship. You might want to take the person on the road with you to seminars or conferences, or trade shows.  Or you can have meals together – just something special, to connect you to the other person, and where you begin to develop a bit of a history.
  9. Once Connected, Move Ahead – As someone once said, “Leadership is cultivating in people today a future willingness, on their part, to follow you into something new for the sake of something great.”  And connection creates this willingness.



One thing I wanted to be sure and mention to you, in relation to #5 above (Recognize & Respect differences) – the thing is if you can find

common ground

then things like cultural differences don’t matter as much. They diminish, once you get to truly know another person ! >> I can say this with confidence because I lived in California, with lots of different cultural influences


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** Extra Reading:   *Personality Plus by F. Littauer – 4 Personality Types discussed (from .01 cent at Amazon)   Navigate for Others  (Continuation of the series of blog posts)

Resources:  and


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