You can’t make it on your own. That’s not a putdown—it’s a
reality. The bigger your goals, the more help you’re going to need in reaching
them. John Maxwell says, “The definition of a nightmare is a big dream and a
That’s why I believe the most important member of any leader’s team is a phenomenal Executive Assistant.
A phenomenal EA is like an air-traffic controller for your
life. Not just your business—your whole life. They help manage the intricacies
of life’s intersections between work, family, social obligations, and more.
A phenomenal EA can be the difference in success or failure.
I’ve experienced it, and I’m sure many of you have too.
However, before you can find a phenomenal EA, you must first be a phenomenal leader.
Linda Eggers has been John Maxwell’s assistant for over 30
years. She’s often asked how to be a good assistant. Her response is always the
same: “Find a top-notch leader to work for.”
In other words, if you want the best, you have to be the best!
Here are 6 requirements for the leader looking for a phenomenal
1. You set the atmosphere.
Having the right personnel and the right principles in an
organization sets the right atmosphere. This is the leader’s responsibility.
You cannot delegate atmosphere to someone else as the leader. You set the tone.
2. You are secure.
Be the first to apologize. Be the first to forgive. Be
humble. Be vulnerable. Unrealistic views of yourself create unrealistic views
of success for others.
3. You connect.
Who wants to have a relationship where connection only
happens when something is wrong? Connect frequently and connect on common
ground. Continually move from your world to others, and allow others to move
4. You are generous.
Be generous with your time; be generous with your
recognitions; and be generous with your communication.
5. You are teachable.
You must know your weaknesses and ask for accountability in
those areas. If there is a better way, then adopt that way! Andrew Carnegie
said, “I owe whatever success I have attained by and large to my ability to
surround myself with people who are smarter than I am.”
6. You know what is important to you.
Know your priorities in life and put them in order. This allows you to set expectations for yourself and others. Good leaders know where they are going and have plans to get there.
From my experience as CEO for all of John Maxwell’s companies, I can tell you that I wasn’t able to find a phenomenal Executive Assistant until I first understood and applied these 6 requirements. But once I did, everything changed.
When you are able to truly empower a phenomenal EA, they become the most important person on your team.
John Maxwell Leadership Podcast