This is my first time ever hearing John Maxwell speak and I have to say he was inspiring, thought provoking, and motivated for what he loves which is seeing leaders get better. Today, he addressed the core principle on how leaders get better by asking Great Questions. As he puts it, “the better questions you ask, the more doors open for opportunities.” The biggest thing he warned to everyone is that, “you only get answers when you ask questions.” Think of that time when you wanted to ask a question, and you hold it back. Eventually you feel like you cheated yourself walking out of that conversation or class where you wanted to ask a question. In my own leadership development, I love to ask questions, but sometimes I hold back on some questions because I second guess myself. So as John challenged me, I challenge you to ask those questions and not hold back. Ultimately, questions allow us to build on ideas to create even better ideas. John did talk about a lot of other great ideas which you can find in his new book called, “Good Leaders ask Great Questions: Your Foundation for Successful Leadership.”
We also heard from another speaker in session one, her name is Linda Kaplan Thaler. She is currently the CEO for the Kaplan Thaler group which develop huge marketing initiatives for companies like Aflac, Toys ‘R’ Us and many others. Thaler talked about having your GRIT (Gusts, Resilience, Initiative, and Tenacity). She asked a question, “Why are we afraid to Fail?” Tahler than followed that with the idea that sometimes we aren’t Brave enough to try that’s when we have to have the guts to step out of the box and do something. Also she pointed out that we need to stop dreaming every day and start working at it to have things become reality. Then she reminded us that we need to over prepare because in life a lot of people never prepare for their future. Then she shared with everyone that, “I may not be the smartest person in the room, but I will out work everyone.” Her points were to: Solve Small Problem, Make your Bed because you need to accomplish something small every day, and Finish what you started. Her last point was to use these ideas and your GRIT for other by serving.
Tim Sanders opened up session two at the Learn Lead Conference. He was the former Chief Solutions Officer at Yahoo and currently is the CEO of a company out of Los Angeles called Net Minds. He started off by saying that having courage and encouragement can change everyone around you. His main idea he shared was a “leader is to define reality and then give hope” said Napoleon Bonaparte. His bottom line was that Success is the not a destination but a direction because you are moving forward in life. His advice to achieve this it to #1 have a Clear Mind, # 2 Creative Tendency, and #3 Be Compassionate. One of his last ideas he shared with us was that you need to work hard on building a creative culture.
John Maxwell then got back up on the stage and finished off this short and to the point Learn Lead Conference. His first point was that we now need to ACT (Apply, Change, & Teach) with everything we learned today. Then he finished off the half day conference with talking about asking those important questions which is usually the questions you ask yourself. He challenged everyone to ask a questions like, Am I investing in myself? Am I investing in the right people? Am I genuinely interested in other people? Overall this conference was short but powerful. I have been challenged once again to ask the right questions, surround myself around good people, and ultimately become a better leader.