In his book, Practicing Greatness, author Reggie McNeal makes a strong call for leaders to take the next step in leadership effectiveness. “Deliberate mediocrity is a sin,” quotes McNeal at the start of his work and from there he begins a practical and theological overview of a leader’s call to abandon mediocrity in the pursuit of greatness.

McNeal introduces and explores seven disciplines of extraordinary spiritual leaders as the premise for leadership greatness. With his background as part of the South Carolina Baptist Convention, McNeal uses principles grounded in the Bible as the bedrock for his work. This is more than a man’s pursuit of greatness; this is a deeper understanding of pursuing the fullest, God-glorifying potential that a leader can in light of examples in Scripture.

The practical wisdom found in Practicing Greatness makes it a valuable resource for all levels of aspiring leaders. I found myself having to reach for a pen on a regular basis to underline another great nugget of leadership wisdom as I read through this book. From a writing standpoint it’s easy to read and has a nice overall flow to the train of thought.

I would recommend Practicing Greatness for any ministry leader because of the practical and theological wisdom that it contains. Practicing Greatness is published by Jossey-Bass Leadership Network Series and is available for purchase at, Barnes & Noble, and other leading bookstores.