Connecting increases your influence in every situation


Chapter One Synopsis

Connecting Increases Your Influence in Every Situation

Maybe there was a time when people could succeed in life without communicating effectively with others. I tend to doubt it, but if so, that time has passed. It’s not enough to just work hard. It’s not enough to do a great job. To be successful, you need to learn how to really communicate with others.

Haven’t you ever gotten frustrated in a presentation because you weren’t able to communicate your ideas as effectively as you wanted to and people just weren’t getting it? Haven’t you ever wanted to help your boss understand how hard you worked and how much value you add to the company so that you could get a well-earned raise or promotion? If you have children, haven’t you wanted to get them to listen to some of your wisdom so that it would help them make good choices? Haven’t you wanted to improve your relationship with a loved one or make a positive impact on your community? If you can’t find a way to do that, you will be unable to reach your potential, you won’t succeed in the way you desire, and you’ll be forever frustrated.

So what’s the secret? Connecting: the ability to identify with people and relate to them in such a way that it increases our influence with them.

The good news is that connecting can be learned. How do I know this? Because I didn’t start out as a good connector at all. I had to become one the hard way – I watched great connectors and did what I could to develop skills like theirs. I made a lot of mistakes along the way, but I kept improving.

If you are facing connecting challenges, as I was early in my life and career, you can overcome them with connecting choices. My goal for this book is to help you develop the communication advantage by learning to connect with every kind of person in any kind of situation.

I believe that almost everything we become and all that we accomplish in life comes as a result of our interaction with others. If you also believe that to be true, then you intuitively know that the ability to connect with others is one of the most important skills a person can learn. It’s something you can begin to improve starting today. This book will help you do it.

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  1. 201
    Tiffany Wright says:

    As with every John C. Maxwell book, I am intrigued! I am reflective, and motivated to bring my leadership to another level. Sometimes we get so focused on the doing that we lose sight of the connection that we are making or breaking. I’m and excited about the book coming out! I want to read more!

  2. 202
    Brian says:


    Love the chapter and looking forward to the rest.
    What is the difference between ‘connecting’ to help get promotions, and kissing you know what?

    I work at a University and have seen people get promotions by what many of us would describe as embarrassing themselves to get ahead. What they are doing is clear and obvious. Look forward to reading the rest of your new book.

  3. 203
    Chuck Bernal says:

    Great job – excellent subject. I NEED this book in my own life and I am looking forward to reading the coming chapters. Thanks for this opportunity.
    I have been doing some reading recently regarding connectivity in the context of technology, specifically the internet. I am amazed at how integral internet connectivity is to our lives and how easy it is to take it for granted until it stops working. The most recent example was the crash of Google’s Gmail service on September 1st that left over 150 million users unable to “connect” to their email accounts for almost two hours. Google released a statement calling it a “Big Deal” and was carrying out a thorough investigation as to the cause.
    Dror Shuchman wrote a very insightful article regarding the importance of internet connectivity in our 21st century culture. I have included a link to the article as well as a powerful quote.
    “In this ever-changing, technology-driven society, the importance of Internet connectivity is on a par with the importance of electricity in the early 20th century. Electricity’s endless applications made it an essential household utility—and like electricity, the importance of the Internet has been reinforced by the innovations that make use of it . . . Internet connectivity has extended beyond a convenience to a necessary foundation for real-time interactive communications, and new wireless technologies like Wi-Fi allow this new foundation to be deployed more quickly, easily and economically throughout any property than previously possible.” (Wireless Internet Connectivity: Are You Ready for the Future? By Dror Shuchman)

    This article is germane to the entire premise of Chapter One in your book. Shuchman writes, “Internet connectivity has extended beyond a convenience to a necessary foundation for real-time interactive communications . . .” For many people, the idea of relational connectivity seems like a nice “add-on” much like choosing optional equipment on an automobile. But in reality, connectivity is the foundation for all healthy, growing relationships and it’s significance can not and must not be underestimated. It is only at the point of connectivity that true relational communication can take place.
    Taking the Google metaphor one step further: Google had servers storing all the email accounts for those 150 million users and each of those 150 million users had desktops, laptops and smartphones equipped with the capacity to connect to those email accounts, but there was one huge problem – there was a “glitch” in the whole system that prevented connectivity so neither Google nor the email account holders could communicate with one another. How sad it is to know that each of us is hard-wired by our Creator with the capacity for connectivity but because of a “glitch” in the system (human fear, selfishness and isolation) we don’t make the vital connection that each of us needs.
    As of right now, Google is still trying to isolate and repair the glitch to prevent further problems. Most of us, rather than trying to fix the problem, continue to let the glitch prevent connectivity and we live with much LESS than we could be experiencing. How sad it is to imagine a world without internet connectivity. How much sadder it is to imagine a world where each of us has the built-in capacity to connect with one another but we choose not to do so.

  4. 204
    Wade D. Sadlier says:

    Thanks for this timely book in my life. I have felt frustrated in many ways the past number of years in trying to move beyond current levels, and striving to reach more potential. You have unwittingly identified my roadblock. I didn’t realize it was my inability to connect with others that was responsible for the stalemate I felt. Now I feel hope that I can learn the valuable lessons on how to connect with others, and am looking forward to the rest of the book. Thank-you.

  5. 205
    Deeleea says:

    I’m not a people person. I get so enervated by long conversations and large groups. However, in the business of connecting the thing that has helped me the most is the simple act of making an effort to remember someone’s name. It’s a skill I’ve cultivated and it has paid dividends in customer relations and my teaching career!

  6. 206
    Lisa Kovalchik says:

    Thank you for sharing your book ahead of time! I think chapter 1 is very insightful. I definitely agree that truly connecting with others is one of the most important keys to success in both our business and personal lives. One thing that stood out to me is the part where you talk about how people crash, cope or change in response to challenges. I grew up learning how to cope very well and was able to keep going through many hard times as a child, teenager and young adult- however, I struggle with really moving on to the level of change and being more proactive, and I realize I need to do that to achieve my potential! I look forward to reading more- thank you!

  7. 207

    Anything that you write is always in depth and in tune. I thank you John. I love this new approach to teaching communication to the world. We are most defiantly living in the communication generation. one of the many things that I love about Jesus is his way to communicate compared to what has been taught by religious sects. Jesus would never come straight at you with scripture, instead he would approach you with a simple story that would intertwine scripture to teach you value lessons. Jesus knew for him to gain the trust of the person or group, that he was speaking to, he would have to come to where they were in there thinking, instead of making them feel like they should automatically Come to where he was in his thinking. Of course he could have blew their minds with his knowledge, yet in his wisdom he knew that they where not ready for it. I call that compassion communication. A good story about a farmer in the field planting some seeds or a story about a Father with two sons one leaving and then coming home again, would be his wise chose in teaching them new deep knowledge about his Kingdom. He knew how to make people feel comfortable about what he wanted to teach them. At the same time, even using that technique he knew some would still disagree with him. He would then focus on those that seemed interested in what he had to say, teaching them the deeper things of what he was saying. if he where here today he would be doing the same, using todays technology to do it. Now the beautiful thing in all this to me personally is, how he spoke to me in my own heart after all that I’d been through growing up. He never come at me with a religious tone. It was always a gentle loving word, drawing me little by little, closer and closer to him. I call this the drawing communication. I was raised in a home that was full of drunken chaos. My dad was an alcoholic. I never knew anything about church or anything about the bible, until I was twenty four years old. Drugs and drinking was all I ever knew. On top of that, all my growing up years all I remember is my dad calling me stupid, telling me I’d never be able to do anything or ever amount to anything. Many times he would Hold me down making my sisters slap me in the face while he would just laugh and taunt me. This kind of thing and more went on daily. Because of all that I was always behind in school. My mom has pictures of me in the first grad with black eyes from fighting. Never had the courage to even get up during show and tell in the second grad, if the teacher tried to make me I would go into a rage. I was Scared to talk to anyone. Yet they thought I was just mean. But didn’t know the pain. By the time I was in the seventh grad I probably stayed in the office more than the class room. Because of what my dad was doing to me at home, it had built so much rage and hate in me that I would fight anyone that even looked at me wrong. I even lost it so bad in the fifth grad that I knock out one of my class mates during class. The class mate was a girl. She got in the way while me and someone else was fighting. Because of that rage, I didn’t know what I was doing till it was done. I would black out in my anger rage. Ended up dropping out of school at sixteen. Never done home work, never read books, ever. Words do matter parents. Here’s the beautiful part about Jesus. When he came to me at the age twenty four, he began a process on me that was miraculous, looking back on it, it was super miraculous. It has been a journey of healing and change, that I never knew could happen to me. I remember telling myself after first getting saved, that there is no way that I can change. Long story short, I’m now forty three years old and Jesus has proved me wrong. Since the beginning of my salvation I have read multitudes of books, including my favorite, the bible. I have always loved where Jesus was speaking. The red letters. I Have sense the beginning written five books and now working on writing a movie script. To know me, from the past, that is a miracle, trust me. Jesus taught me to forgive my dad first, and then ten years after that, my dad gave his life to Jesus. Saved,Yeah. Another Miracle. Then he began a process on me to teach me how to communicate with others. It seems like its taken me longer than some, my scares where deep. Even now I have to ask Jesus to help me Overcome some of those scares. I taught kids class for eight years. He taught me first to communicate with children. Which was another miracle. Then he moved me to adults. Which, I found Myself stuttering a bit because, still in the back of my mind the enemy would try to use those words that my dad would say to me. That’s one of the things I still have to ask him to help me overcome even after all these years. My point in sharing all of this is, no matter what our back ground may be or what we had done to us. Once Jesus finds us, his ultimate goal is to teach us how to communicate with others. He is our ultimate example in every area of our existence. Especially in communication. without communication the gospel would never get out. We think in our arrogance as a human race that technology has been discovered by us and only for us. Yet,Modernization and technology has been allowed by the creator of all things for the sole purpose of communicating his beautiful story of salvation to a lost and dieing world. He knows that we all had different back grounds and different characters,yet he knows best of how to train us up in our character to be able to communicate his gospel to the world. You too can Find your way to communicate without the taste of condemnation or religious needles. No matter what your back ground may be, it is the future that will make the difference in someone elses life. Forgive me John for being so long in this. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for what you have already communicated to the world. it will go on forever. I hear it every where that I go. We’ve all been touched by your zeal to communicate. The cool thought to me, because it conserves me, is that yours and others, writings, will go on even after your gone. Helping all the generations to come for all eternity. Especially those during the time of the antichrist, they will surely be looking for some answers to help them make it through. Even into eternity, generation after generation of God’s creation will go on reading what is being communicated now. Looking ahead is the wisdom of eternity. Terry McReath, soldier of Jesus Christ my Lord, over and out. Read more of my testimony on my facebook page. Google: Terry McReath for Info.

  8. 208
    Cassandra says:

    In the classroom, I teach that connection is key. Leadership is about connecting with people. Serving customers is about connecting. Raising kids… connecting. Thanks for the opportunity. I’m looking forward to reading more.

  9. 209

    Hi John,
    WOW what a GREAT first chapter you left me with wanting to read more. You are bringing to the forefront of what every interaction should be which is a connection. I work in a business where interaction takes place daily and if you fail to connect it’s hard to try to follow up esp if your in sales or in a customer based enviorment to make the ultimate goal which is a sale. I can hardly wait to read chapt. 2

  10. 210

    […] John C. Maxwell  Everyone Communicates, Few Connect VN:F [1.5.7_846]please wait…Rating: 10.0/10 (1 vote cast)VN:F [1.5.7_846]Rating: 0 (from 0 votes) Tagged as: John C. Maxwell […]

  11. 211
    rodney stewart says:

    i think connection is based on the chemistry between people, sometimes it is just not there and when that is the case there is no point in trying to force the connection because we usually begin to use manipulation as a way to influence the other person when trying to connect which is always wrong even when you think that what you want to communicate is very important, the end doesn’t justify the means. Jesus is the greatest example of connecting with people without manipulating them.

  12. 212

    In the spirit of being a “connector” I must say that this has been the one thing that has enabled me to be a successful Army Chaplain. While other Chaplains were in the books I was going outside the wire to meet and shoot the breeze with my commanders and soldiers, even to the lowest levels. People will never know that you care for them until you show them.

  13. 213
    Grace Bower says:

    Response since no 150 – 188 – love Joe’s suggestion to have a space for written reflection at the end of the chapter 196 – Reference to Prince Charles and Princess Diana excellent illustration of connection and non-connection. When they were first married they came to Christchurch NZ. I was on the wrong side to see Lady Di – we were all wanting to see her and Prince Charles was really grumpy about it. I don’t even remeber taking a photo of him but I could have touched him by the photo but i was straining to see her on the othere side!
    202 has a lot of points to include with the electricity picture and the internet connectivity as a foundation for interactive commnunication.

  14. 214
    Brenton Chomel says:

    John –
    Thankyou for allowing us to do this. I enjoyed what I read and having heard you preach, can hear you talking through the pages.
    My only hesitation/disagreement was of your Bush/Obama comparison. The Carter/Reagan comparison was a more realistic one. Obama is very similar to our current Australian Prime Minister Rudd and South Australian Premier Rann, who are very good at “connecting” with (and manipulating) the media, but not with people per se.
    Having said that I will share this story with you that can be applied in various ways – possibly with “connecting???” I have used it as an introduction to a sermon I titled “Who’s Driving The Bus?”
    I am a bus driver in South Australia.
    I used to drive long distance coaches between Adelaide and Mt Gambier a journey of about 5 1/2 hours (c. 250 miles). On Fridays the driver travels down and back in the one day with a relief driver on the return journey at a small town 3 hours from Adelaide.
    On this particular Friday I had a double decker coach with a full capacity. I got down to Mt. Gambier pretty much on time, had a couple of hours rest before the return journey where I departed with only a couple of passengers on board. At Naracoorte (one of the towns along the way) I picked up a young lad (about 11-12 y/o) board who was travelling unaccompanied. His grandfather put him on with the consent form and requested that the lad travel upstairs because he had never before travelled on a double decker. I complied with the request, even though unaccompanied children would normally travel downstairs up the front close to where the Coach Captain can keep an eye on him.
    So we got going, had a 1/2 hour meal break at Bordertown and arrived at Titinara right on the dot of 9pm where my releif driver was waiting. No time was lost. I jumped out of the seat and he jumped in and we got going again. Now by this time it was very dark and the only lights inside the coach were the floor lights. I had been showing a movie and the movie finished, so I said to my releif that I had better go check on this young fellow.
    Now what you have to understand is that in a double decker, the top half is pretty much cut off from the bottom half and it is almost impossible to know what is happening up there or vice versa.
    So here we are travelling at 100 kph (60mph) along The Dukes Hwy in pitch darkness and I venture up the stairway with my flashlight in hand.
    I spotted the young fellow sitting behind the stairway and went up to him and said,”I’m just checking that you are ok.”
    His eyes were nearly bulging out of their sockets in the darkness and he said: “Yeah, I’m OK, but (wait for this now..) WHO’S DRIVING THE BUS?”
    I said, “Don’t worry, I have it set on auto-pilot!”
    “Can you do that?” he asked.
    “Sure,” I said. “I do it all the time. Just hit the Cruise Control and away we go…!”

    True story!!!

    I had to ‘fess up to him, but I think you could say that a “conection” was made!!!

    Feel free to use the story (if you wish) in future chapters/books/sermons ( with credit of course). As I said it can a variety of applications. Bus drivers/coach captains have lots of stories some of which can be pretty unbelievable.

    Love your ministry.

    Regards and blessings,


  15. 215
    Bill Fix says:

    When I met you for the first time, I had been invited to one of your talks, I have no idea what you talked about but I will never forget how I met you. I was standing in the first row. This tall smiling guy came in late and stood beside me. He turned smiled shook my hand and said, “Hi, I’m John.” We spoke for several minutes and sensed a general interest in me. Then someone introduced you! That friendly guy took the stage and from that time on, I have listened to you in books, CD’s and live. You really are a tremendous connector and we can learn much from you. Thanks for this first chapter.

  16. 216
    Wendi Weir says:

    What a timely book chapter for me to read. I only just was introduced to your writings last December and had the chance to hear you in L.A. in March of this year. I am looking very forward to your session here in town in a couple of weeks.
    I am rapidly approaching 60 and am very cognizant of how closed my life feels because of my lack of skill in communicating effectively. My husband’s gift in connecting with people is one of the things that drew me to him many, many years ago. I feel I have been very disciplined these past few months in terms of trying to find the resources and mentors that will help me become a better me and this first chapter is very exciting to me. I’ve heard/read many times that when the student is ready, the teacher will appear. I believe that when the student is ready, she will be able to see the teacher who has always been there. It’s like when you buy a new car, you start noticing all of the other cars on the road that are the same. They were always there but because of your own change of focus, you now see them. I can see by all of your writings that you have been there for many years writing your books; the difference is that I am now ready to see! I so look forward to the coming chapters as a guide to helping me get beyond my prison of being a poor communicator.

  17. 217
    Gary says:

    How wonderful the thoughts that you share John. I can hardly wait for this book to come out. I have spent some 40 years before the public speaking, yet at times have been unable to connect. This is a timely book that many a leader needs to get their hands on.

  18. 218

    Awesome Chapter!!! never underestimate the impact of your timely books!

    Would be great to see a ‘vintage quote’ used from a previous book of yours.
    One of yours I recall which profoundly impacted me on communication which goes well with this chapter.
    “I do not communicate with you so you will understand. I communicate with you so you will not misunderstand.”

    A lack of communication will sever connection.

  19. 219
    Marcos Gaser says:

    Great first chapter!

    After reading the chapter and glancing over the comments, I have the feeling that there is too much emphasis on connecting as “effective communication”. I think that connecting means also “active listening” Many times is easier to connect through listening than through talking.

  20. 220
    Tes Casin says:

    In one sentence, connecting is letting the other person know that you care.

    I’m looking forward to read the rest.

    All the best!

  21. 221
    Tes Casin says:

    And speaking of ‘connecting,’ what a courageous approach to share the manuscript to the public before publishing.

    Great leader, an epitome. You inspired us always, Mr Maxwell.

    God bless!

  22. 222
    Steve says:

    Along with authors Tim Sanders and Dan Miller, John Maxwell is again reaching out to us with his heart and wisdom.

    There are to many leaders without communications skills and also to many folks that are very bright that gave up on reaching those leaders. Hopefully we will learn how in John’s new book.

  23. 223
    Chin M C says:

    Great skill to learn and implement in our personal and professional lives. If we were to make connection whenever possible , not only we open up ourselves to others but we make others happy too . John’s new book should make us come pretty much ALIVE !

  24. 224
    Diana Dominguez says:

    Great first chapter. Can’t wait to read the rest! This is something I definitely struggle with, so I’m looking forward to learning how to effectively communicate with others. Thanks, Mr. Maxwell!

  25. 225

    There you go ,demonstrating the authenticity of what you write by allowing the readers to make inputs to the book. As a contributor you feel to be part of it.
    The world will be a much better place when we learn to cummunicate and CONNECT! You are surely a difference maker.
    Are you taking any pre-orders for the book or sell chapters only, cant wait for march 2010 ! This is the most important element of our social network marketing business.

    Nevertheless I thank you for the glimpse. It was a pleasure to meet and shake hands with you at Abundant Life ,Bradford ,England.

    All the best.

  26. 226
    Ryan says:

    Thanks for allowing us to connect. You took a communication risk by bring others into your personal workshop to review, judge, and comment on the quality of this chapter. Based on the number of responses, it emphasizes the importance of your message and demonstrates how connecting with your readers (in this case through the Internet) can open doors of opportunity to make you and your product even better.

    I continue to learn the joys of connecting and challenge myself as a leader to write and/or prepare statements which will:

    1) Make my colleagues feel their work does not go unappreciated or unnoticed;
    2) Understand where we are going as a team and what needs to be done to get there; and
    3) Encourage feedback and allow them an opportunity to improve the overall process by placing their fingerprint on it.

    Doing this has made me realize a very important fact – great communication (either written or verbal) creates connection which directly results in: fewer colleague turnovers, an enjoyable working environment, balance, drive and a determination to succeed.

    Hopefully your readers will experience personal success through connections – but maybe just as important – realize the value these connections will have on others around them and enjoy watching the trickle-down effect which will touch all aspects of their lives.

  27. 227
    Ryan says:

    I am a teacher and a coach, and I really have to “connect” with my students and players. One of the keys to connection for me is “building a relationship.” Showing interest in them outside of what you are trying to communicate reinforces that what you are saying relates to them. I think you hinted at this in the last part of Chapter 1 discussing your son-in-law. I liked the first chapter and I am looking forward to the rest. I really enjoy you leadership-wired and have shared it with others. I am constantly trying to connect with others and I am sure your book will help. “If they don’t know you care, why should they care to listen?”

  28. 228
    tami rush says:

    earlier this year i joined twitter…actually i joined over a year ago but it scared me…i love twitter and i love feeling connected to people all over the world . your chapter triggers this….as does my thoughts about twitter… rev run ..tyra banks kim kardashian…mariel hemmingway…kathy ireland…alicia keys………and many many more are the most kind twitterers…they connect so well to others that i have to remind myself that i do not officially know them even though i feel like they are my dearest friends….this i feel sets them apart from others…..then there are a few recognized names that twitter…but it comes across they dont want to be twittered comments i have read that they say to others that must have twittered them in twitter land …what i find odd in that is that if you twitter you may get twittered back as twitter is a place of connection….everyone communicates..few connect..i love it…it fits with so much i have been thinking of for months,,,what i have noticed for example ..because of the connection i feel on twitter from alicia keys i have noticed i listen to her music now because i want to learn more about her or anything that i run into with her name on it i read or watch i “retweet” anything she wants retweeted or i think should be……i feel a loyalness to her that before twitter did not exist…..and i would say this about every good connector ..i have noticed i am less likley to do the same for some i had admired that i have observed on twitter that seem not so connecting to all…i have less appeal toward them…realizing some people have zillions of followers and cant twitter to each one individually..rev run still comes across connecting he sends a general message to all….making him a good connector….so in my observations of myself ..when i feel connected to someone i am going to spread the good word about them more…i will buy more from them…i will support their causes….and i notice i will support them in things i was not really interested in before but am willing to open my mind more because they were the one that brought it to my attention..whatever “it ” may be……..i look forward to chapter two..thank u for this..

  29. 229
    Ed Lopez says:

    I feel I am outgoing and believe in connecting/ networking. Like everything else in life though, you won’t bat a 1.000 . Not sure if you address this in other chapters. Well , I know its just something you have to get better at by doing it all the time like Steve. Saw you in Manila back in 04. You have been back twice since then and I made mistake of not going. I will keep my ears open for next visit of yours Dr. Maxwell.

  30. 230
    Charles D Martin says:

    Thank you for all your service too the growth of others. It is truely an impressive position you have taken to thrive people forward. I’ve been blessed to have read multiple books written by you and have been blessed by your presents live on three occasions being associated with world wide.

    The text was very good and very enlightning only feedback I would like to pass though you will probably discuss it in later chapters is teaching connecting and share it with children especially. I truely believe that our culture has halted connecting for our children and next generations are loosing sight of the value in people as opposed to things. We may be loosing our value in connecting with youth therefore lack of mentoring and lack of modeled leadership. Thank you

  31. 231
    Metamor4sis says:

    By doing this, you walk the talk. Look forward to seeing how to maintain a life of connecting without burning out.

  32. 232
    Bobby Capps says:

    Great chapter on connecting… Isn’t it true that no matter what you say or how well you say it, what is heard is what matters.
    Seems to me that connecting increases the probability of being heard, opens the relational gates to being heard and maybe even allows people to drop their defenses.
    But I’m still curious, once connected, what is heard?

  33. 233
    Tim Skinner says:

    Hi John!

    “We exist for connection, and what we do with that existence is build more connection!”

    “Our very existence on this planet is for connection with the creator and His people; Jesus sums it up with the greatest commandment” matt 22:37-41

    In some of Jesus last words after resurrection and preparing to leave earth He gave us a mission, “mission connection” or as the bible states “The Great Commission” matt 28:19-20

    “What we do with this gift of existences is to connect more people to the Creator and His people, this is the Great Commission”

    Love the start of your book!
    Tim Skinner

  34. 234
    Alisha Callahan says:

    Hi John,

    I really enjoyed reading the first chapter. And am excited for the rest! I can connect with just about anybody on a one on one conversation. But when it comes to having a conversation with two or more people I sit back and let them do all the talking and have a hard time putting in my input. I would appreciate any help in this area. Thank you and your friend from world wide group, Alisha

  35. 235
    Shari says:

    Even though I have learned to be a connecting person, it has been difficult when I am an introvert at heart but have pushed myself to be more of an extrovert. I look forward to the rest of the book. I hope that you discuss how a basically shy person can learn to step out of her comfort zone and initiate contact more effectively.

  36. 236
    Piya Medakkar says:

    When I read your message on Twitter that you are gonna come up with a book on effective communication I was excited!! After reading the first chapter,I believe it is important to be a good communicator to explore your potential. I’m really looking forward to be amotivator in life. I come from a background where I was many times put down, mocked at and was laughing stock!No regrets now at all! I know “past is gone and can’t be relived”,well this is from one of your books “Today matters”, apoem by Dale Winterwood. I love that poem. I have taken a printout and clipped it on my bulletin board. I am healed from those experiences but I wanna be a motivator in the lives of ppl I come across. The simple reason is that one feels he/she is capable of doing the task because you believe in him when you encourage him(yes genuinely). I wanna share my experience: In my school days I was conscious that boys look at me with wrong intention and that kept growing in my mind . When I walked on roads, certain men use to eve-tease and I graded all men alike.Such insecurities hindered my friendly attitude towards men .Now I am totally free from that mentality,thanks to Jesus! In my masters, I had acne on my face and again I felt ppl avoided me because my face did not lok pleasent,now I ‘m healed and have a good skin! I am generally quiet when I outside. I usually do not approach the other person and even if I do,the conversation stops at “how are you?, how’s work?how’s family and good day!”, then full stop! Next time I see the same face, I repeat the same agenda…sounds funny but I wanna improve. This book will help me I’m sure. Thanks a lot .God bless you

  37. 237
    Laurinda says:

    Very cool first chapter. Here are my observations from reading:
    1. you convinced me early on the importance of connecting, but your argument continued. They were all great stories, so I can’t tell you what I would cut out.
    2. The courage to change section, Pt 1. There Were Things I Could Change but I Didn’t Know How & Pt 3. I Wanted to Make a Difference Not Just Know About the Difference ~ seem too similar, could they be combined into one point.

    I started to wonder the difference between connecting and communicating in the chapter because you were using them interchangeably. So maybe a clear definition of connecting and communicating up front would help

    My biggest ah-ha from chapter: When people get frustrated they either crash, cope or change. Having coping skills isn’t enough.

    I hope you go into lots of details on ways to connect with people.

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    Hershel Kreis says:

    Awesome!!! I was able to glean a number of things from this chapter that I hope that I will be able to use in my job.

    In Him,


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    I think that this is the beginning of something incredibly powerful. When I first put up my website, the first quote I had on the site was a quote by you: “Educators take something simple and make it complicated. Communicators take something complicated and make it simple.”
    I am a born educator, that’s my greatest passion, to teach and to expand people’s knowledge in various areas.John, i come from a background that is still very dependent upon culture. I feel that if your book could also address “connecting under different cultural contexts” it would be a great read. I always tell people that great leaders can connect with anyone: the poorest and the richest, the youngest and the oldest, black and white. I feel that one of the most important topics in the book should be about “How Leaders value humanity and development”, mainly because i feel that connecting with people, is being able to capture their “spirit”, and this is not only cultural, but most importantly “HUMAN”.
    From my point of view, and from my background, Africans are still dealing with very deep-rooted beliefs about connecting with people in the first place, and this would be a great opportunity to connect with those who are in a position to “reach out”, almost as if encouraging future leaders to reach out to their communities and encourage such things as education, but also being able themselves to encourage others to reach out in the same manner. That’s only when we will be able to connect entirely with the Western World. I look forward to rest of the book and i hope this has made a difference.

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    Wow… Thinking For a Change helped create and clarify what is INSIDE me.. now this book will help me get it OUT! I cannot wait to get a hardcopy I can hightlight, take notes in the margin, and teach to others!

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    Judy says:

    Great, can’t wait to learn more about how to connect.

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    Ruth Post says:

    Dear John

    I thank you for the opportunity to participate in the birthing process of your new book. It most certainly is a great honour for me.

    From my own personal experience, I would like to share the following:
    I used to be in ministry about 6years ago and then a lot of bad things happened and I got hurt tremendously. The more I would get hurt, the more I would withdraw and the more I became insecure and the less I was able to connect with anyone, even my family.

    Only after I made the decision to connect with myself first of all, my confidence began growing and am I now able to begin connecting with others again. If a person cannot connect with him/herself it is so much harder to connect with others.

    May God bless you through the process of this brand new book.

    Kind Regards
    Ruth Post

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    Great Job as always! I love this, Thank You for sharing with us early!!

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    Sam Buchmeyer says:

    I find the inclusion of Dallek’s five skills and qualities of successful presidents to be highly relevant to the concept of “connection” because they describe anyone in a position of influence. Two that I find especially important are charisma and credibility/trust. Charisma done “wrong” creates an air of insincerity. A component of credibility/trust is competence. A lack of sincerity and competence are both barriers to any real connection.

  45. 245
    Ravi Butalia says:

    Hello John,

    Connecting with others effectively requires courage. In sharing the first chapter of “Everyone Communicates, Few Connect” so warmly and so openly, you have clearly demonstrated one the great qualities of great communicators and connectors – love of ones fellow human beings. Where there is love, there is also kindness, compassion and respect – attributes that make the hearers heart more receptive and open. Thanks ever so much! You make a great difference in this world!

    Best wishes,

    Ravi Butalia

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    Sandy Gorman says:

    Only a leader and author with true connection skills could ask for reflections on the internet while publishing a book so close to ones heart.

    I was selected as Teacher of The Year for an elementary campus in Dallas, Texas. Then I was selected in the top 8 elem. teachers for the district. The teachers and my administrators noticed that I had a special rapport with the students. The students wanted to achieve. I realized after reading Chapter 1 that I was connecting. I went to the Thesaurus and found association, connection, affiliation, rapport, bond, liaison, link, and correlation listed under relationship. My goal was to build a relationship with each student. The students wanted to achieve because they knew I really cared.

    During my presentations to teachers and administrators at the local, state, and national levels, I held their attention. I didn’t realize that I was connecting until I read your Chapter 1. In order to connect, the leader needs to care about the members in the audience. The audience knows that if the leader cares just like the student in the classroom knows if the teacher truly cares. In order to get attention, the leader needs to pay attention. I liked the way you compared the connecting and communication skills of individuals in leadership.

  47. 247
    Mike Otis says:


    If you haven’t heard of this book, check it out…..I heard about it a few weeks ago while listening to an audiobook (Goals) from Brian Tracy…………The book is called, “Pushing To The Front”, written by Orison Swett Marden…….It was first written in the 1890’s after Orison Swett Marden lost his hotel in the midst of a depression, and decided to write a book to motivate and inspire others to persist in spite of the challenges facing the nation.

    Just a quick note from the publishers of his book……”Dr.Marden in “Pushing to the Front”, shows that the average of the leaders are not above the average of ability. They are ordinary people, but of extraordinary persistence and perseverance”…..”There is inspiration and encouragement and helpfulness on every page”.

    I haven’t read it from cover to cover, however, I have taken a look at several different chapters, and it’s truly amazing this book was written over a hundred years ago, because there are several nuggets of wisdom that can be applied to succeeding personally and in business today……..and alot of these nuggets are related to connecting with others through interpersonal communication.

    Looking forward to Chap 2

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    Wanda says:

    You are right on Mr. Maxwell. Communication is so important in life: Friendships, relationships, marriage, in the workplace, business, politics, preaching the Gospel. Not just communication but as your new book tells us-connecting. Thank you so much for another great. We really need this and I look forward to reading each chapter. Wanda Fay Gladwill

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    Hi John, connecting with others is one of the most memorable and fulfilling experiences; I find that great listeners are great communicators.
    Much success to you,

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    Tim Buttrey says:

    John, once again you have mined a concept that all of us recognize but few of us understand. I am going to love this book because it will apply to those who are not necessarily “leaders.” Everyone wants to connect just like everyone wants to be loved! In fact, it is impossible to love well without a deep emotional connection. My journey has taken me into working with couples and men. I do a lot of marriage counseling and one of my most important tasks is to help each couple reconnect. Whether it be poor or unhealthy communication, busyness, or even very important tasks, becoming disconnected is the death knell of any relationship. I know, it happened to me. Now I want to have a PhD in connecting with my wife and the people I care about. Connecting is a very other-centered skill. Genuine connecting won’t happen unless I am truly interested others.

    I can’t wait for chapter two – and then the entire book.

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    Tim Buttrey says:

    One more thing…John, do you really remember the names of those kids in first, second, and third grades? I’m impressed! I guess you connected more than you thought you did. And I connected much less than I thought I did. Oh well.

  52. 252
    Jeff Engebose says:

    John, love the concept (as always with your books)!

    I’m not sure if this chapter is the one to mention it, or if it’ll be brought forward in a future chapter, but I hope you’ll talk about electronic media and it’s ability to help you connect. My belief is that while electronic media can introduce a connection, especially over long distances where we may not have had the opportunity to meet a person, it appears that in this age of technology so many people are failing to “connect” as they tend to hide behind these formats. I believe Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc can all be part of a connection, however we are missing something if we don’t have that “real” conversation.

    It’s much easier to send an email, yet so much more impersonal. How many times have we misread someone’s words due to a lack of context or tone in an email/post?

    In the end, I have to go back to something a mentor taught me a few years ago. Yes, sending an email may be quicker or easier, but you won’t build a relationship that way. Pick up the phone. Talk to that person. See them in person.
    I don’t want a connection with my keyboard, I want a connection with a person!

    looking forward to the next chapter!

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    Marissa Briones says:

    Hi John,

    Thanks for all your hard work along with your team of wonderful people!

    First for typos:
    (1) Under “Connecting is Key,” I found double entries of the word “that” on the first sentence of the first paragraph. It says (caps mine), “After spending forty years as a leader and communicator, I am convinced more than ever THAT THAT good communication is all about connecting.”
    (2) Closer to the end, under “It Starts with Your Attitude,” on the 4th paragraph, I think you meant to say “direct correlation” instead of “direction correlation.” It says: “Jay Hall of the consulting firm Teleometrics has studied the performance of 16,000 executives and found a DIRECTION CORRELATION between achievement and the ability to care for and connect with people.”

    I’m grateful that you are helping us learn to really connect. I like the questions you posed; they are the questions that many are asking:
    *How do we choose which messages to tune in and which to tune out?
    *How can you make your words count?

    You have effectively pointed out through the use of stories and illustrations that if we want to succeed, we must learn to connect. Thank you for the examples you’ve given us.

    The nuclear power plant was a powerful word picture for me. Thank you!

    What you said about “coping” under “The Courage to Change” served as an awakening for me; it was how I’ve often dealt with frustration. I desire to learn more and change, so I”m looking forward to what you have to teach us.

    Thank you for your life-changing work!

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    Carla Conrad says:

    SO looking forward to the continuing chapters – I have thought that communication is my passion – that’s why I mixed my design work with broadcasting – to effectively reach more people – but this post (and the forthcoming chapters) has me re-evaluating that thinking, open to my passion may be ‘connecting’!. In student mode for Dr. Maxwell’s teaching!

  55. 255
    Renu says:

    There is a typographical error in the section “More Talk Isn’t the Answer” in the last sentence of the second paragraph. Rodriguez has been wrongly spelt as “Rodriquez”. The”q” should be a “g”.

    Forgive me for asking, perhaps this may be irrelevant to the story and a stupid question, but wouldn’t Mexico be out of the jurisdiction of a Texas Ranger even around 1900?

    I really enjoyed reading the first chapter and look forward to reading the next one. Good work! I feel that it connects well with the readers. Thanks for sharing.

  56. 256

    Waiting with great anticipation for Chapter 2! Caught myself counting the days last Thursday – that’s a good sign!

  57. 257
    Vicki Znavor says:

    Love your work – I own every book you’ve published – thank you.

    I like this first chapter. The only “message” I think could be enhanced is that often in this fast-paced world we want to simply check the box – “yes, I’ve communicated with this person”- our goal is simply to complete a task and that’s ok in many transactions but not all of our communications should be thought of as “transactions”. It’s this differentiation that requires that a different approach depending on the desired/needed outcome.

    Thanks so much for sharing this work and opportunity!

  58. 258
    Anonymous says:

    This opening chapter is amazing. I can’t wait to read more. I have been trying to get this message across to the college students I work with each and every semester. You have hit the nail on the head with this one.

    I really think this is applicable for anyone. However, I wish you could write a book specifically for teenagers and young adults on this subject because this is oftentimes where they fail in the road to adulthood.

  59. 259
    Gina Brady says:

    This was great stuff and I look forward to reading the second chapter! I agree that connecting is the key to building people and helping people. Too many people rely on technology in this day and time! Very good stuff John and I look forward to reading chapter 2! God Bless!

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    Can we still really connect if we lie? I mean, for example, we can do all things (speaking in front of audiences, etc.) while we are keeping a lie in our lives. Should we confess our lie(s) or sins so that we can start REALLY communicate and connect…?

    Thank you, Dr. John Maxwell, for writing this important book for us.

  61. 261
    Sumesh says:

    Dear John,

    Another inspiring book, cannot wait to read the upcoming chapters. This is one thing I have wanted to improve and change. Connecting is crucial for everyone and just social networking without personal touch may not be sufficient in today’s fast pace world. I am sure you will also throw some light upon HOW to connect in the future chapters personally and impersonally. I love the first chapter and your idea of collaborating with us is innovative. My wife and I are big fans of your work.

    Thanks for the opportunity,

  62. 262


    We read and see writings, and hear talking everywhere. But, not all of us really think, read, see, and listen.

    (a paraphrase of William Wallace’s “All men dies’ not all men really lives.”)

  63. 263


    We read and see writings, and hear talking everywhere. But, not all of us really think, read, see, and listen.

    (a paraphrase of William Wallace’s “All men dies; not all men really lives.”)

  64. 264
    Charles Coachman says:

    Mr. Maxwell,
    For years I have listened to your tapes/cd’s and read your books and even came to listen to you and Bill Hybels when you came to speak in San Jose a few years back. Your words have helped me to listen more carefully to what is being said and to look at a person more carefully to understand the words that are not being said.
    For years I felt like I was not worth much, but after accepting Jesus Christ as my personal Savior and then being introduced to your books in church I began to see myself in a much different light.
    In my career as a Realtor, the ability to connect is the difference between putting food on the table or deciding that I will just go on a water diet. I know that your words and the ideas that you will introduce will help me to move forward in my career. Servant minded leadership and service to others are a couple of ideas that I picked up from you and Zig Ziglar that have changed my life in countless ways. Now I look forward to your latest book and a chance again to listen to you speak at another K-W reunion.
    May God continue to bless you!

    Charles Coachman
    San Jose, CA

  65. 265
    Betty says:


    I love your books! I took your class Learning the 21 Irrefutable Laws Of Leadership a few months ago and it was wondeful! I would like to do more of your classes!

    This book will be as exciting and informative as the others that you have written! Can not wait to read chapter 2.

    Thank you for the opportunity to read Chapter one before your book is released!

    God Bless!

  66. 266
    Daniel Schultz says:

    Fantastic! It transcends personality and gifting and is something we all can apply and understand. Its something I didn’t really think about yet now when reading about it, its like a flood light that pops on in a small dark room. I WANT MORE!

    Thank you John – I love all you write and stand for.
    -Pastor Dan

  67. 267
    Jack Sparling says:

    Great first chapter and timely topic for me. Looking forward to chapter 2. Peace and blessings.

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