page title icon Leadership Lessons from 2021

Wisdom and insights from leaders who succeeded and struggled during 2021.

2021 has been a rough year for most of us. The world is just coming out of a pandemic, and the majority of leaders are facing a new reality. There are new challenges to face and the things done before may no longer apply today.

In this episode, Brian Dodd shares some of the lessons he’s learned from various leaders in faith, athletics, business, and life. He hopes that these stories will help inspire and challenge you to become the better leaders that God has designed you to be in 2022 and the year beyond.

Brian Dodd grew up 30 minutes north of Atlanta, GA, in the towns of Acworth and Kennesaw. At the time, both cities were two-red light, very small towns. Brian’s family was very dysfunctional and he, his brother, sister, and mother experienced every type of abuse imaginable. In Brian’s home there was emotional, psychological, verbal, physical, and spousal abuse.

When Brian was twelve years old, his dad mercifully left home. Brian’s single mom then began taking the children to Acworth United Methodist Church so they could have some form of stability. The time there changed Brian’s life.  

When Brian was 14 years of age, he accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior. Brian’s life was headed in a negative direction in which he would have become a statistic. However, this decision set him on a new trajectory. Brian’s life, even as a teenager, now had direction and intentionality.

It was also there Brian also began to experience and value leadership. A series of mentors entered his life at different seasons and filled the vacuum left by an absentee father.

For the past 35 years, Brian has been involved in non-profit leadership. For the last 20 years, he has been employed by INJOY Stewardship Solutions, an organization that helps non-profit organizations with fundraising and leadership development. This organization was founded by Dr. John Maxwell who remains a primary influence in Brian’s life.

Brian writes the website Brian Dodd On, which has been recognized as one of the Top 50 most-read leadership sites globally and one of the top 15 most-read non-profit leadership sites. Out of this site has come a coaching course and three books. The most recent is 2021 The Year In Leadership: The Stories of Faith, Athletics, Business, and Life Which Inspired Us All.  Brian has also been recognized as one of Inc. Magazine’s Top 100 Leadership Speakers.

Brian currently lives in Woodstock, GA, with his wife of 31 years, Sonya. They have a 23-year-old daughter named Anna. She is a graduate of Liberty University with a business and ministry degree.

As wonderful as the last 40 years have been, Brian truly believes his best days are ahead.

Tweetable Quotes and Mentions

Listen to @BrianKDodd get over the hump on the @FastLeaderShowClick to Tweet

“Leadership is intricately linked to solutions. When a leader walks into a room, solutions should walk into a room.” – Click to Tweet

“Respect and humility is a choice.” – Click to Tweet

“You’ve got to address tough conversations head-on.” – Click to Tweet

“Culture is: ‘This is what we say, this is what we do.’” – Click to Tweet

“The greatest learner is always the teacher.” – Click to Tweet

“We’ve got to be the picture of the desired destination that we want others to arrive.” – Click to Tweet

“Leaders should never focus on ‘been there, done that.’ Leaders should focus on ‘going there, doing that.’” – Click to Tweet

“Growing leaders build growing organizations.” – Click to Tweet

“It is one of the true compensations of this life that a man can’t help another without helping himself.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson – Click to Tweet

“You are responsible for the decisions that you make today.” – Click to Tweet

Advice for others

Every hill is not worth dying on. Therefore, only fight the fights that advance the organization and advance the development of people.

Holding her back from being an even better leader


Best Leadership Advice

The only successful leadership model is servant leadership.

Secrets to Success / Tools

Bible and books.

Leadership as an Identity: The Four Traits of Those Who Wield Lasting Influence

The Score Takes Care of Itself: My Philosophy of Leadership

BE 2.0 (Beyond Entrepreneurship 2.0): Turning Your Business into an Enduring Great Company

2021: THE YEAR IN LEADERSHIP: The Stories of Faith, Athletics, Business, and Life Which Inspired Us All

Brian’s website: 

Brian’s book: 

Brian’s Twitter: 

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Check out other episodes on leadership lessons from history:

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