Real Leadership: 9 Simple Practices for Leading and Living with Purpose
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Real Leadership: 9 Simple Practices for Leading and Living with Purpose

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***A Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestseller***



Leadership lessons for enduring business and personal success from renowned motivational speaker, current leadership editor of Success magazine and former co-CEO of Primerica, John Addison



In Real Leadership, author John Addison shares his straightforward practices for successful leadership through his personal and professional journey, helping leaders at any level understand and emulate the nine principles that fostered enduring results on his path to success.

As co-CEO of Primerica--the largest independent financial services marketing organization in North America--from 1999 to 2015, Addison spearheaded the company through a period of rapid growth in the early 2000's, then helped navigate the company through the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, and the separation from their parent company, Citibank, which created one of the most successful IPOs of the decade.

Guiding the organization through these monumental changes while also working to keep morale high, Addison developed a passion and talent for motivating others that allowed him to inspire and empower over a million people during his career.

The perspectives and personal laws of success that he's developed over decades of hard work and diligence boil down to the principles of living your best life. Because that, says Addison, is the essence of leadership: having the courage, honor, and integrity to live your true life, the one you were put here to live, and to do it in a way that makes the world a better place than it was before you got here.

Addison's story shares his experiences--from small-town southern boy to influential CEO--providing a riveting read that is down-to-earth and profound in its simplicity and honesty. His practical takeaway lessons will help you lead better in every aspect of your life. It's the kind of leadership that others will follow over the long haul, through the good times and the bad, through the ups and the downs; it's real leadership.


John Addison is the former Co-CEO of Primerica, the largest independent financial services marketing organization in North America. He currently serves as CEO of Addison Leadership Group as well as the leadership editor of Success magazine. As a renowned, world-class speaker, he has motivated millions with his insight and wisdom on leadership, personal development, and achieving success in both their careers and their personal lives.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 288 pages
  • 165 x 236 x 25mm | 506g
  • McGraw Hill Higher Education
  • London, United States
  • English
  • 1259584445
  • 9781259584442
  • 548,183

Back cover copy

"This powerful, practical book is loaded with great ideas to help you achieve better results, faster, in any organization."
--Brian Tracy, author of How the Best Leaders Lead

"John's 9 simple practices are straightforward and backed by real-life experience. His words will motivate you to lead and live with courage, honor and integrity."
--David Bach, author of the #1 New York Times bestselling books The Automatic Millionaire and Start Late, Finish Rich

"A proven leader in the competitive world of financial services, John Addison knows how to build a great company. His new book is a fascinating and deeply personal account of three decades of success facing challenges and surmounting obstacles, filled with powerful anecdotes and inspiration from great leaders from the past."
--Lee Pollock, Executive Director, The Churchill Centre

"A must read for those seeking to improve their leadership skills, manage people or situations better or simply have a better perspective in life. As John's colleague of 30 years and co-CEO of Primerica for 15 years in both the best and worst of times I have seen his leadership principles in action. They work-pure and simple."
--Rick Williams, Former Co-CEO Primerica

"Reading this book is like having John as your own personal leadership coach. The relatable stories and impactful practices in Real Leadership will motivate anyone who is leading a team. This book is just what anyone striving for greatness needs!"
--Don Yaeger, New York Times bestselling author

"Many people write and talk about leadership, few of which have demonstrated it, with extraordinary success, like John Addison has. If you want to learn real leadership, then read this book."
--Darren Hardy, CEO Mentor, New York Times bestselling author and Former Publisher of SUCCESS

"Some people talk about leadership, John Addison eats, drinks and sleeps it! This book will give you purpose and a plan to lead the life you were meant to live."
--Jeffrey Hayzlett, Primetime TV & Radio host, Chairman C-Suite Network

"Real Leadership is a fascinating, stimulating, disarmingly candid, yet profoundly impactful book. John's unique storytelling style makes his powerful points even more penetrating. Leadership is a vital 'life force' that every human being needs to master for every facet of their life and career. This book shows instead of merely telling. You will benefit from reading and living John's advice."
--Jay Abraham, world renowned business growth expert

"It takes more than a great business model for a company to be successful over the long term. At Baron Capital, we pride ourselves on discovering innovative leaders who can thrive in an always changing business environment. We found that leader in John Addison whose differentiated approach and execution through uncertain financial times resulted in Primerica being a top tier corporation. We would not have made the investment nor would the company have been as successful if not for John's leadership."
--Ron Baron, chairman and CEO Baron Capital

"John lives and breathes Real Leadership. I'm proud to say I witnessed the stories and practices in this book firsthand. He led, he fought and he served our team. Primerica wouldn't be the company it is today without his leadership. Follow John's simple practices to impact your team and produce REAL results."
--Glenn Williams, CEO Primerica

"John Addison is more than a leader, he's a coach and a motivator. If you want to lead your team and inspire others to great results like John has, Real Leadership is the book for you."
- Jack Canfield, the New York Times bestselling author of The Success Principles and The Chicken Soup for the Soul Series

"John Addison is one of the greatest businessmen, speakers, and leaders of this generation. Not only has he pulled himself up by his bootstraps and achieved so much in his own business career, but he has selflessly devoted his time and energy to helping thousands of other people be more successful in their own lives. In this book he shares 9 practical lessons that everyone, in any career or stage of life, can apply to be a more effective leader."
--Fran Tarkenton, NFL Hall of Fame Quarterback, and CEO of Tarkenton Companies

"True leaders inspire others to lead. John Addison is that kind of leader, inspiring the next generation of leaders using ageless wisdom, modern examples, and practical tools. Positive leadership is practiced, not inherited. And Real Leadership lights the way."
--Shawn Achor, the New York Times bestselling author of The Happiness Advantage
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Table of contents

Foreword v
Acknowledgments ix
Prologue xi

CHAPTER 1 First Things First 1
Decide Who You Are
CHAPTER 2 The People Business 27
Shine Your Light on Others
CHAPTER 3 Culture Shock 53
Build on Your Strengths
CHAPTER 4 Anchors to Windward 85
Earn Your Position
CHAPTER 5 Boom Years 115
Focus on What You Can Control
CHAPTER 6 Mortality 147
Develop a Peaceful Core
CHAPTER 7 Decision 173
Be a Lighthouse
CHAPTER 8 The End of the World 197
Don't Burn Bridges
CHAPTER 9 Independence Day 227
Make Your Parents Proud

Epilogue 253
The Nine Practices 256
Index 257
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About John David Mann

John Addison is the former Co-CEO of Primerica, the largest independent financial services marketing organization in North America. He currently serves as CEO of Addison Leadership Group as well as the leadership editor of Success magazine. As a renowned, world-class speaker, he has motivated millions with his insight and wisdom on leadership, personal development, and achieving success in both their careers and their personal lives.
show more

Rating details

13 ratings
4.23 out of 5 stars
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4 15% (2)
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2 0% (0)
1 8% (1)
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