Who Are You Bringing With You..?


Every ninety days or so, I get together with several of my mentors… along with a number of those who view me in the same light.

The way it usually goes is that we converge on some great American city for the weekend… immerse ourselves in the exercise of personal growth and leadership… and forget all about everything we can’t do… aren’t doing… or haven’t done.

Last fall it was Denver… last weekend, Minneapolis/Saint Paul.

Now imagine for a moment that you run an organization with tens of thousands of individuals in it. But more so, picture this… they are all volunteers… they don’t have to be there.

If they are following… if they’re engaged… if they’re growing… it’s because they want to be. And it’s because, as the leader, you have attracted the right people… and provided the right environment.  If you can run this organization… there’s a good chance you could run most any.


One of these special individuals happens to be a mentor to me. While speaking last Saturday, he threw out this golden nugget… at least it was to me.

In the middle of a sentence, he stopped and then said simply, “I bring on great people… and make sure that they never leave because of me.” That’s it… attract great people, and create an environment that people don’t look to leave.

Now, if this were a bunch of managers sitting around… we no doubt would have heard about the costs associated with turnover, and the need to minimize churn while maximizing efficiency, and… yuck.

But we weren’t a group of managers… not one in the bunch… and the topic was on leaving a legacy that matters forever… not pinching a penny ’till Lincoln’s gasping for breath.

And leaders know that the most valuable legacies… those that transform lives and relationships… happen when we invest in people… not in processes or markets.


You see, leadership is not complete without a plan to bring on the next great leaders. The reason we don’t want our people to leave, is that we can’t sow into the lives of people with whom there’s no relationship.

We can’t bring someone along… who is no longer there.

My statement to all rising stars is the same… “I’m totally fired up for you… I really am.  Now, tell me about the people you’re bringing with you.” The answer is the difference between the givers… and the takers.

I look forward to speaking with you.


To do:

Write down the names of the people who are mentoring you in each of these areas: Business or career, finances, relationships or parenting, personal growth, health, and spiritual walk.

Write down the names of those that you are mentoring in each area.



Do you have a written plan that will allow you to pass your mentors… and that will allow those you mentor to pass you?


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2 thoughts on “Who Are You Bringing With You..?

  1. Great comments on this one, it is who we serve and who we bring along with us that makes us either rejoice in gladness and have fun, or be off on our own taking a walk because we are really not leading anyone.

    By the way, that was a great leadership training!

  2. Hey, thanks Brent… it was good to see you in the Twin Cities, my friend.

    I like your point that as leaders… “we serve”.

    It’s a way of thinking that is completely foreign to a lot of those who are trying to claw their way to their next position on the backs of others.

    And it’s one of the reasons that I believe you are destined to have a great business.

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