Pinnacle leaders stand out from everyone else
Prime the pump
November 14, 2023

Pinnacle leaders stand out from everyone else

“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 C. Maxwell.

I have had the esteemed privilege to have worked in different industries and have been impacted by different people in positions of authority. Though not all the “leaders” I have encountered, I have emulated, my experiences with all of them have shaped me into the rounded professional and leader I am and continue to aspire to be.

If you are searching for the perfect leader, search no more, I am yet to encounter the “perfect” leader and I doubt that you will find one. You would find those that you want to be the opposite of and others with commendable traits that you want to emulate.

Strive to be authentic. May your followers consider their encounter with you a pleasant experience. Create your own unique brand as a leader.

In his book ‘The 5 Levels of Leadership’, John C. Maxwell said that there are five levels of leadership which he describes as Level 1 – Position, Level 2 – Permission, Level 3 – Production, Level 4 – People Development and Level 5 – Pinnacle.

Today we take a closer look at leaders at the Pinnacle of leadership.

However, before we delve into Level 5 Leadership, I want to touch briefly on two leaders that I have worked for/with simultaneously who have helped to mould me as a professional and leader. By virtue of them sharing the same office space, I first met them five years into my professional career when I left the public sector to join the private sector on a private resort island. They were my immediate bosses. They were two completely different leaders. One was a Scottish and the other was a German.
One was charismatic. An extrovert. Well-articulated and had exceptional writing skills. He had the ability to tap into people’s emotions. He got people to share their personal challenges without trying. He was sensitive to the needs of the team and exhibited strong engagement skills. The flip side was that generally you never knew his intentions and he avoided having difficult face to face conversations.

The other was dull, somewhat cold. An introvert. Low emotional intelligence. Not very tactful in his communication. Nip things in the bud early. He worked hard and worked first before play. He was good at identifying people’s strengths and delegated and stretch persons outside of their comfort zone. He was a perfectionist. Your growth under his leadership was fast and steady.

Fortunately for me, I never had to choose because as you can see from the above, both though uniquely different, brought much value to me as a follower. I pulled from one’s charismatic side to complement my leadership style and pulled from the other’s ability to delegate and match task based on people’s strengths to foster steady growth and independence. I learned to get comfortable with discomfort and was able to grow and thrive as a professional and leader.

John C. Maxwells said “Rare is the leader who reaches Level 5—the Pinnacle. Not only is leadership at this level a culmination of leading well on the other four levels, but it also requires both a high degree of skill and some amount of natural leadership ability. It takes a lot to be able to develop other leaders so that they reach Level 4; that’s what Level 5 leaders do. The individuals who reach Level 5 lead so well for so long that they create a legacy of leadership in the organization they serve.

Pinnacle leaders stand out from everyone else. They are a cut above, and they seem to bring success with them wherever they go.

Leadership at this high-level lifts the entire organization and creates an environment that benefits everyone in it, contributing to their success. Level 5 leaders often possess an influence that transcends the organization and the industry the leader works in.”

“Leadership is a continuous learning process, and great leaders are always seeking to improve and grow.” The day you feel like you have arrived as a leader, is the day your influence starts to diminish.


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