All leaders, regardless of title, have the capacity to be great.
Influential leaders inspire and motivate talent, which can turn any organization into a winning team.
“A transformational leader understands the significance of influence and inspires others through a genuine interest in them,” says Walter Anderson, CEO of Anderson Consulting & Training. “Influential leaders create productive and contagious workplaces when everyone understands the invaluable skill of influence.”
Anderson provided training on “The Power of Influence” a skill set that speaks to leadership at any organization, during Federally Employed Women’s Virtual Leadership Summit II. Workshop attendees learned to:
- Explore the three myths of influence
- Identify the characteristics of an influential leader
- Define how to lead without authority
- Explore the behaviors required to create a contagious culture
According to Anderson, here are four ways people lead with influence:
Everything begins and ends with relationships. Your influence at work is no exception.
When it comes to building relationships, it’s important to remember two things: 1) People do business with people they like, and 2) People like people who help them.
Building rapport with your colleagues will play a big role in them accepting your vision—or not. And they will be more inclined to help you along the way.
Listen To Others
The most important part about communications isn’t talking. It’s listening.
In fact, when you actively listen to someone, you will actually know what to say when you start speaking.
Listening to others gets them involved with you and your ideas. That’s critical because involvement—the new buzzword is “engagement”—is the secret to commitment. If you want someone to commit to you, to support you, you must get them involved with you.
Listening is a good first step.
Lead By Example
Practicing what you preach goes a long way.
When team members see you roll up your sleeves and do things no one else wants to do, like working nights, weekends and holidays, it goes a long way. It will encourage some team members to follow suit and give a little extra to support the cause.
This is how “me” becomes “we.”
Become an Expert
Everybody knows the score.
When you present yourself with confidence and back it up with expertise, people will respect you. Once you have earned their respect, you will be able to influence and lead.
To become an expert, you will need to have an honest conversation with yourself about your strengths and weaknesses. What are the high-value skills needed to do your current job? How about your next job?
Identify degree programs, webinars, training and certifications that will bolster your current knowledge and place you in a position of authority.