Season 5, Episode 4: Permission to Turn the Page [Podcast]

5 Reasons Reading Will Make You an Awesome Leader

Welcome to Season 5, Episode 4 of the This Is Your Life podcast. Stu McLaren is filling in for my regular cohost Michele Cushatt. In this episode, we discuss five reasons reading will make you an awesome leader.

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I’m convinced that the reason I ascended the corporate ranks, became a CEO, and ended up writing about leadership is because I’m a reader. Here’s why it made the difference for me and how it can make the difference for you.

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Season 4, Episode 9: Don’t Bite That Apple [Podcast]

4 Temptations Every Leader Faces

Welcome to Season 4, Episode 9 of the This Is Your Life podcast. Stu McLaren is filling in for my regular cohost Michele Cushatt. In this episode, we discuss four temptations every leader faces.

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Power amplifies who you are—the good, the bad, and the ugly. That means leaders have to be on their guard about certain temptations. I don’t know a single leader who has not dealt with at least one of these four.

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No, You Don’t Need to be Great at Everything—and Why You Shouldn’t Even Try

One Belief Holding You Back in Business and Life

If you’re an entrepreneur at heart like me, it’s tempting to wear every hat in the business. This is especially true if you’re cursed with being halfway good at all those jobs.

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That’s not a compliment, by the way. I should emphasize the word cursed. Think of it this way: Would you intentionally hire someone who was halfway good at their job? Of course not. You want people who are fully competent.

And yet it can be hard to let go of those hats, right? But here’s the reality. If you want to wear all the hats, you’ll have to pull out more than a rabbit to be successful.

Season 4, Episode 4: The Secret Power of Smiling [Podcast]

5 Reasons it Matters—for You and for Others

Welcome to Season 4, Episode 4 of the This Is Your Life podcast. Stu McLaren is filling in for my regular cohost Michele Cushatt. In this episode, we discuss the secret power of smiling.

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When I was CEO of Thomas Nelson, a consultant called me out for how little I smiled. I didn’t know I was scowling, but I was setting the wrong mood for my team. After that I not only learned to smile, I learned five reasons it matters—for you and others.

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Season 4, Episode 3: Why Learning to Lead Means Learning to Follow [Podcast]

5 Characteristics All Great Followers Have in Common

Welcome to Season 4, Episode 3 of the This Is Your Life podcast. Stu McLaren is filling in for my regular cohost Michele Cushatt. In this episode, we discuss why learning to lead means learning to follow.

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If you want to be an effective leader, it’s critical that you first learn to be an effective follower. It sounds counterintuitive, but without the character and skill formation that comes from learning to follow, you’re almost guaranteed to be a poor leader.

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5 Ways Reading Makes You a Better Leader

The Science Behind Reading and Influence

Pollsters say reading is in decline. As an author and former publishing executive, the statistics make me wince. But I’m optimistic for another reason.

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Why? A readership crisis is really a leadership crisis. And for people who know how to respond, crisis is just another way of saying opportunity.

Season 3, Episode 5: The Top-10 Characteristics of Lousy Leaders [Podcast]

We Most Often Learn the Most from Those Who Lead the Worst

Welcome to Season 3, Episode 5 of the This Is Your Life podcast. In this fifth episode, Michele Cushatt and I discuss the top-10 characteristics of lousy leaders.

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Follow the major news stories on crises in business, politics, diplomacy, whatever, and it’s impossible to miss that most are crises of leadership. Unsurprisingly, we see the same failures and mistakes over and over. Here are the ten I most often notice.

What I Learned from Donald Miller about Being Brave

3 Powerful Truths from His New Book ‘Scary Close’

Donald Miller’s newest book, Scary Close: Dropping the Act and Finding True Intimacy, is out and off to a great start. I can see why. It’s his best book so far.

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I’ve known Don for over a decade. He was one of our bestselling authors at Thomas Nelson, during the time I was publisher, president, and later CEO. But more than an author, over time he also became a friend—and a teacher.

Don told us about his relationship with God in Blue Like Jazz, which went on to become a huge success. Now, Don tells us about his relationship with relationships. And I hope it becomes a huge success too.

The 37 Best Business Books I’ve Ever Read

I have been in and around the publishing business my entire professional life. So I understand the potential impact of a great book.

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In business, the right book at the right moment can tilt the playing field and give you a crucial advantage. These thirty-seven business books have personally made a huge difference for me. In fact, they’re the best I’ve ever read.

The Most Important Question a Leader Can Ask

This is a guest post by my friend, John C. Maxwell. He is a New York Times bestselling author, and his newest, Good Leaders Ask Great Questions, releases today. I enthusiastically recommend it.

Michael and I have been friends for well over a decade. When we met, he was already a good leader. But over the years I’ve watched him grow and become an even better one.

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And one of the things I love about Michael is that whatever he’s learning, he’s continually passing along to you.

If you’re like most of Michael’s readers, you want to become a better leader. You want to grow. You want to be more productive. You want to develop your platform. In short, you want to increase your influence. But I have a question for you. Why?

The 4 Revolutionary Leadership Tactics of Paul Revere

This is a guest post by Joel J. Miller. Formerly a vice president at Thomas Nelson, he is the author of the fascinating Independence-era biography, The Revolutionary Paul Revere. You can find him on Twitter or his blog.

When we think of leaders from America’s revolutionary era, our minds jump to military commanders like George Washington, political organizers like Samuel Adams, and rousing orators like Patrick Henry. In the hierarchy of the Revolution, these men stand atop the loftiest rungs. For good reason.

The Revolutionary Paul Revere

These men accomplished amazing feats against incredible odds. But they could not have done it alone. Like executives in a successful company, they required the service and sacrifice of others to achieve their goals. They required effective lieutenants—people like Paul Revere.