John Maxwell’s Biography & Quotes on Leadership, Success, and More!

If you’re looking for John Maxwell’s biography, you’re in the right place. Here, you’ll get his biography, quotes, book recommendations and some actionable takeaways.

You may have decided you want to do something with your life to make an impact, but it can be like searching for a needle in a haystack trying to find the exact path you want to take.  There’s so many different impactful paths you can take, and if you’re not careful, you can get snagged into a scam, a pile of lies, or even stay stagnant from overwhelm–that’s why it’s nice to know of great examples like John Maxwell.

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Who is John Maxwell? | A John Maxwell Biography

As a pastor of a small church in Ohio, John Maxwell started out like many young people and entrepreneurs. He knew he wanted to help people, he knew he wanted to make an impact, and at the time, pastoral care was the most meaningful way he knew to express his purpose.  He was a pastor for 30 years before dedicating himself to speaking, writing, and consulting.

Now, he’s the founder of:

The John Maxwell Company – Creates and distributes leadership curriculum to corporations, governments, and businesses of all sizes.

The John Maxwell Team – Equips over 13,000 coaches and leaders to become top leaders in their businesses, communities, jobs, or for personal growth.

Equip – A nonprofit organization that trains and mobilizes Christian leaders to fulfull the Great Commission. To date, Equip has established 6 million leaders in 196 countries.

The John Maxwell Leadership Foundation – A nonprofit organization designed to facilitate transformation thru values and intentional living in governments, education, business, churches, arts, media, and family.

He also has several other notable accomplishments like:

  • He’s a New York Times bestselling author
  • He’s sold more than 24 million books in 50 languages
  • He was called the #1 Leadership authority by Inc. Magazine
  • He sold over 1 million copies of “The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership,” “Developing the Leader Within You” and “The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader”

As a result of all of his work, you and I are able to see John Maxwell’s example of various ways a social mission can be accomplished.  Here’s some quotes by John Maxwell on leadership, success, and relationships that can give even more insight about how to accomplish a social mission in business and life…

john maxwell biographyJohn Maxwell Quotes on Leadership

“A great leader’s courage to fulfill his vision comes from passion, not position.”

“The best leaders are humble enough to realize their victories depend upon their people.”

“Leadership is not about titles, positions or flowcharts. It is about one life influencing another.”

“Great leaders always seem to embody two seemingly disparate qualities. They are both highly visionary and highly practical.”

“When the leader lacks confidence, the followers lack commitment.”

“A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way.”

“The leader’s Attitude is like a thermostat for the place she works. If her attitude is good, the atmosphere is pleasant, and the environment is easy to work in. But if her attitude is bad, the temperature is insufferable.”

“Leaders must be close enough to relate to others, but far enough ahead to motivate them.”

“If you really want to be an uncommon leader, you’re going to have to find a way to get much of your vision seen, implemented, and added to by others.” John C. Maxwell

“A leader who produces other leaders multiplies their influences.”

“If you can’t influence people, then they will not follow you. And if people won’t follow, you are not a leader. That’s the Law of Influence.”

“The higher you want to climb, the more you need leadership. The greater the impact you want to make, the greater your influence needs to be.”

As a leader, the first person I need to lead is me. The first person that I should try to change is me.

“A successful person finds the right place for himself. But a successful leader finds the right place for others.”

“Real leadership is being the person others will gladly and confidently follow.”

“If you want to be a leader, the good news is that you can do it. Everyone has the potential, but it isn’t accomplished overnight. It requires perseverance.”

The challenge of leadership is to create change and facilitate growth.

“Talent is a gift, but character is a choice.”

“The measure of a leader is not the number of people who serve him but the number of people he serves.”

“Anyone can steer the ship, but it takes a leader to chart the course. Leaders who are good navigators are capable of taking their people just about anywhere.”

Leaders who are effective are leaders who are disciplined in their daily lives.

“Leaders don’t rise to the pinnacle of success without developing the right set of attitudes and habits; they make every day a masterpiece.”

john maxwell biographyJohn Maxwell Quotes on Success

A minute of thought is greater than an hour of talk.

Most people want to avoid pain, and discipline is usually painful.

“The whole idea of motivation is a trap. Forget motivation. Just do it.”

The difference between average people and achieving people is their perception of and response to failure.

“Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn.”

“Life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. ”

“Learn to say “no” to the good so you can say “yes” to the best.”

“A man must be big enough to admit his mistakes, smart enough to profit from them, and strong enough to correct them.”

“One of the major keys to success is to keep moving forward on the journey, making the best of the detours and interruptions, turning adversity into advantage.”

“Small disciplines repeated with consistency every day lead to great achievements gained slowly over time.”

“Doing the wrong thing daily, compounds over time.”

“Without failure, there is no achievement.”

“Success is not a destination thing, it’s a daily thing.”

“Reaching the top is a monumental achievement, but remaining there may be the most spectacular feat of all.”

“Although it’s admirable to be ambitious and hard-working, it’s more desirable to be smart-working.”

“Live to learn and you will really learn to live.”

“If we are growing, we are always going to be outside our comfort zone.”

“The greatest mistake we make is living in constant fear that we will make one.”

“Successful and unsuccessful people do not vary greatly in their abilities. They vary greatly in their desires to reach their potential.”

“Be willing to sacrifice pleasure for opportunity.”

“Give up to go up.”

“People who use time wisely spend it on activities that advance their overall purpose in life.”

“The secret of your success is determined by your daily agenda.”

“Success is due to our stretching to the challenges of life. Failure comes when we shrink from them.”

“Make a point to continually search for a better way of doing things, even when things are going well, to ensure that a better alternative has not been overlooked and to keep your creative talents in practice.”

“Priority management is the answer to maximizing the time we have.”

“Plans rarely stay the same, and are scrapped or adjusted as needed. Be stubborn about the vision, but flexible with your plan.”

“There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.”

“Success each day should be judged by the seeds sown, not the harvest reaped.”

john maxwell“A difficult time can be more readily endured if we retain the conviction that our existence holds a purpose – a cause to pursue, a person to love, a goal to achieve.”

Change is inevitable. Growth is optional.”

“You will never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.”

“Courage isn’t an absence of fear. It’s doing what you are afraid to do. It’s having the power to let go of the familiar and forge ahead into new territory.”

“Growth is the great separator between those who succeed and those who don’t.”

“To change your life you need to change your priorities.”

“Dreams don’t work unless you do.”

“Most People have a desire to look for the exception instead of the desire to become exceptional.”

“Growth inside fuels growth outside.”

“Happiness simply cannot be relied upon as a measure of success.”

“You don’t overcome challenges by making them smaller but by making yourself bigger.”

“If you start today to do the right thing, you are already a success even if it doesn’t show yet.”

“People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care”

“The pessimist complains about the wind. The optimist expects it to change. The leader adjusts the sails.”

“We cannot become what we need by remaining what we are.”

“The timing of your decision is just as important as the decision you make.”

“Failing forward” is the ability to get back up after you’ve been knocked down, learn from your mistake, and move forward in a better direction.”

“Success is…knowing your purpose in life, growing to reach your maximum potential, and sowing seeds that benefit others.

“If you don’t have peace, it isn’t because someone took it from you; you gave it away. You cannot always control what happens to you, but you can control what happens in you.”

“Plan and execute your first failure so that you no longer have to fear it.”

“The greatest day in your life and mine is when we take total responsibility for our attitudes. That’s the day we truly grow up.”

“It’s true that charisma can make a person stand out for a moment, but character sets a person apart for a lifetime.”

“There are two paths people can take. They can either play now and pay later, or pay now and play later. Regardless of the choice, one thing is certain. Life will demand a payment.”

“As you begin changing your thinking, start immediately to change your behavior. Begin to act the part of the person you would like to become. Take action on your behavior. Too many people want to feel, then take action. This never works.”

“The unsuccessful person is burdened by learning, and prefers to walk down familiar paths. Their distaste for learning stunts their growth and limits their influence.”

john maxwell biographyJohn Maxwell Quotes on Relationships

“The more serious you take your growth, the more seriously people will take you.”

“To lead yourself, use your head; to lead others, use your heart. Always touch a person’s heart before you ask him for a hand.”

“All of the people in my life whom I consider to be close friends or colleagues are good thinkers.”

Teamwork makes the dream work, but a vision becomes a nightmare when the leader has a big dream and a bad team.

“When people respect you as a person, they admire you. When they respect you as a friend, they love you. When they respect you as a leader, they follow you.”

“You build trust with others each time you choose integrity over image, truth over convenience, or honor over personal gain.”

“Earn the right to be heard by listening to others. Seek to understand a situation before making judgments about it.”

“To add value to others, one must first value others.”

“People may hear your words, but they feel your attitude.”

 A John Maxwell Video Playlist

John Maxwell is an amazing speaker that gives transformational lectures. Here are a few top interviews and lectures we compiled of John Maxwell:

Recommendations for More From John Maxwell | Get More From John Maxwell Today!

John Maxwell is a bestselling author and has written a lot of books.  His books cover leadership, intentional living, success, attitude, and so much more.  Here are some top John Maxwell books we recommend…Each of these books is available at Amazon and if you CLICK THE IMAGES BELOW, you’ll be taken to Amazon to get more details.

The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership

How Successful People Think

5 Levels of Leadership

Everyone Communicates, Few Connect

Intentional Living

Final Words on John Maxwell

The goal of this article was to show you the biography and success quotes of John Maxwell. He’s done an amazing job at creating a business that impacts millions of people with a social mission, and he’s a great example for those who want to change the world thru business.  If you have questions or concerns about this, don’t hesitate to leave them in the comments section.  I’d love to help you out!

Don’t Leave Without Our FREE Gifts!

If you’d like to start or scale your business, check out my free e-course. It’s a framework to start or grow a business from idea to enterprise. Check the free e-course here.

Now, it’s Your Turn…

What are your favorite John Maxwell quotes? Did you resonate with his bio? What can we learn from John Maxwell that can help us use business and life opportunities to make an impact in the world?  Leave your comments below.

4 thoughts on “John Maxwell’s Biography & Quotes on Leadership, Success, and More!”

  1. I love these wise quotes. They are proof that it’s all about perspective. You have to become the best version of yourself in order to be able to make a change. The quotes about success are the true secret to success, this is exactly what I needed to read. Thank you for the inspiration, I just bookmarked your site.

    1. Hello Ruya! Perspective and growth is a huge part of change. You dont have to be the best version of yourself to change, but you have to have the desire to be better (or different) to change. Im glad you enjoyed the John Maxwell biography and quotes.

  2. I knew I’d heard the name John Maxwell before, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on who he was. Thanks for informing us about all we need to know! He certainly sounds like an interesting man. 

    It’s funny, I’ve seen a whole bunch of these quotes all over before but I had no idea they all came from the same man! I like the quote about touching a man’s heart before you ask for his hand. I’ll definitely save a few of these quotes for motivation later down the line. 

    Thanks!

    1. Hi Danny! John Maxwell has some great quotes as well as great lectures and books. They can be extremely motivating. Enjoy!

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