I remember the first time I met John C. Maxwell. He was doing a talk for Worldwide Dreambuilders – a division of Quixtar. Who is Quixtar? Well, Quixtar was the stand-in name for Amway in the 2000s. As with many multi-level marketing platforms, people en mass were labeling Amway a pyramid scheme so the corporation took evasive maneuvers and renamed and branded itself. This may be off the mark factually, but this is how our group explained it to us. Yes, I was in Quixtar.
I was under Glenn and Joya Baker in the organization and they had arranged for John to speak at one of our events. I didn’t really know who John was, so I bought a book and read it before going. I was super-impressed. Nah… I was hooked. I became a bit of a fanboy.
In fact, as I began to become less and less involved in Quixtar, I dealt with a bit of guilt and withdrawal feeling that it was my tie to John. That first meeting was an intimate experience, a small group. From that point on, each interaction with John became bigger. When he released the Leadership Gold package – I believe that was 2007 – I foolishly signed a copy of my own book and gifted it to him. He looked at me like I had three heads. I can’t blame him. It was a big event with a book signing and here comes a nobody handing him a book he didn’t write.
Fifteen years later, my own book on Leadership is hitting the presses and I’ve logged a fair amount of public talks along the way. So what impact did meeting John C. Maxwell have on me?
It was huge. We barely shared a few sentences together, but my involvement in the John Maxwell Team and connection to the organization and other coaches is a tangible journey. You often hear people say that you are a reflection of the people you choose to spend time with. Having met John and read a dozen of his books gives me a unique connection to the person. Being aware of his cadence in speech and tone… it has become near impossible for me to read his book without hearing his voice.
What stands out?
As I write about the people I have met in life, I feel it may be interesting to drive home the influence they have had on me. In the case of John C. Maxwell, I would have to say its integrity. That is a word that gets tossed about freely so I want to be super-clear. The man I read through, and hear speak at events is the man I have seen in smaller rooms and more private conversations. He is authentic and that to me is integrity.