5 Level Leadership Model (John Maxwell)

John C. Maxwell is the author of the highly acclaimed book “The 5 Levels of Leadership”.  He says if people can increase their influence on others, they can lead more effectively. He has identified 5 levels of leadership as follows:

  1. Position: People who make it to this stage are the lowest stage and may not be leaders but just bosses. To succeed at this stage, one must know his values in the areas of ethics, relations and success. Positional leaders feed on politics. They work to gain titles.
  2. Permission: People follow the leader at this stage because they want to. One can like people without leading but an individual cannot lead people well without liking them. On this level, leaders listen to people and people listen to them. Leaders at this stage need to make people know they matter. At this level, leader focuses on the value of each person.
  3. Production: This stage is based on the result. People follow based on what leaders have done for the organization. Leaders at this stage become change agents. This level of leadership communicates the vision through actions. When followers see good results, they get a good reason to follow.
  4. People development: Leaders at this stage reproduce themselves. They come to understand that people are an organization’s most appreciable asset, and they reproduce their influence by growing their teammates into leaders. At this level, people follow because of what you have done for them personally and that’s important to note. People love to follow you because you are developing them and start feeling happy because they’re being better, and become loyal to you and give you the credit.
  5. Pinnacle: The highest leadership accomplishment is developing other leaders to level 4.  It involves high level of challenge. People follow this kind of leaders for who they are and what they represent. Only naturally gifted leaders reach the Pinnacle. Pinnacle leaders have created a legacy that transcends their organization and extends beyond their industry. Level 5 leaders leverage their own leadership through others.

John Maxwell explains further by stating 10 insights to help people understand these leadership levels. Below are the insights;

  1. You can move upper level but you must never leave the previous level behind.
  2. You are not on the same level with every person. You may be at level 2 with your family at home but level 3 with your employees at work.
  3. The higher you go, the easier it gets for you to lead.
  4. The higher you go, the more time and commitment is required to win a level. There is no easy way to go up.
  5. Moving up the levels goes slowly but going down goes easily.
  6. The higher you go, the greater the returns.
  7. Moving further always require further growth. Every risk at a higher level is a natural extension of what the leaders have by then developed.
  8. Not climbing the levels limits you and your people. If your leadership is a 4 out of 10, you effectiveness would be nothing more than 4.
  9. When you change positions or organizations, you seldom stay at the same level.
  10. Finally, you cannot climb the level alone.

This is a great way to understand your own leader in your organisation and also to become an effective leader yourself.

Source of Article: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/book-review-five-5-levels-leadership-mark-lenthall/

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