The Law of Intuition

Leaders evaluate everything with a leadership bias. — John C. Maxwell
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Reflections on John C. Maxwell’s “21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership”

IIntuition is that quiet voice that suddenly speaks up to lead you to an unknown truth. Exceptional leaders hone that voice, recognizing the strengths and weaknesses of their colleagues as well as themselves.

If you are intuitive, then you are making connections others do not see. You can read people, feel the tension of conflict before it arises, and maintain an acute sense of self-awareness.

We all have that inner voice, which speaks of our day to day observations. Therefore, you can learn to be intuitive. You may not be intuitive about everything, but that’s okay. You only need to listen to that voice and ask some follow-up questions to what it may be telling you.

Intuition is often at play when we first meet someone. The long-standing tradition of making an excellent first impression holds. People often decide how they feel about someone during the initial encounter. You use intuition when you are interviewing possible candidates, but it is also how others are observing you.

How one responds to that intuition is vital to a leader’s success. You can gain new business insights, get your company out of a creative funk, or promote the right person to a managerial role. Intuition always seeks a response.

The Most Intuitive Leader in Cinematic History

The cinematic world met Hans Landa (Christoph Waltz) in the Quentin Tarantino masterpiece, “Inglourious Basterds.” New York Times writer, Dennis Lim, describes the character as such:

“this is one surprisingly multifaceted cartoon villain: a genial sadist, an oppressively polite interrogator, a hyper-articulate polyglot whose verbal dexterity is his scariest weapon.”

What makes Hans Landa a great leader, even if he is a villain, is his intuition about people. His ability to use questions as part of his interrogation tactic is what makes him so pristine. He cuts through conversational smug and goes directly to the heart of a topic without showing his malicious intent. Leaders need to become a heroic version of Hans Landa, not someone who uses intuition for self-seeking world domination; instead, someone who reveals the hidden truth intuition provides to propel the company and its employees forward.

The Tether

Within leadership, you must have a sixth sense. Tethering yourself to intuition allows you to ask the right questions, take the right risks, and create the right kind of leader.


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