“No matter what your goals are in life, you can achieve them faster, you can be more effective, and the contribution you make can be longer lasting if you learn to develop your influence.” ~ John Maxwell
It is difficult to have any measure of success without connecting with other people. As a business leader, your success depends on your ability to align yourself and the team to a common vision. This requires you to be able to connect with others in a way that enables them to bring the best of themselves to work.
Whether you are beginning your career or have years of leadership experience, you can increase your influence by applying Maxwell’s ten principles to become a leader of influence:
Integrity with People – Integrity allows people to trust you. When you earn people’s trust, their confidence in you increases. We often think of integrity as being considered trustworthy by others, yet integrity begins from within. You can build integrity by knowing what you stand for and acting it out consistently. If you need clarity on this, contact me for a complimentary discovery session.
Nurture People – People are hungry for acknowledgement. You nurture others when you take a genuine interest in them, make yourself accessible to them, and provide opportunities for them to grow. How do you take an interest in and acknowledge team members?
Faith in People – People who stop short of their goals are rarely defeated by difficulties, but more commonly, they lack belief in themselves. You strengthen others self-worth when you point to people’s past successes and highlight their strengths.
Listen to People – Dale Carnegie stated that strong impressions come from being interested versus being interesting. By listening attentively to others, people feel you truly value them and their loyalty increases. Listening is a key coaching skill that requires you to refrain from judgment and be curious about how the other person views their world.
Understand People – Everyone has a unique map of the world. You increase your influence when you make it a point to understand others – how they think, what they feel, what they want and need, and how they can help them. This is one of the reasons why I love Everything DiSC – it is a powerful tool to help you understand yourself and others, and learn to work better as a team.
Enlarge People – You increase your influence by mentoring and coaching team members. People want to advance but may not know how. You enlarge others when you help them discover and develop their strengths in their areas of greatest interest and passion.
Navigate for People – With any journey comes challenges and difficulties. This requires you to help team members edit their self-critic, encourage them to embrace and learn from challenges, help them seek solutions to problems, and instill confidence in themselves.
Connect with People – Many leaders focus on the vision of where they are going and forget to connect others to the vision. You gain influence when you connect with others on common ground and help team members understand the difference they make. It requires you to view things from another person’s perspective so you can connect their wants and needs to the vision.
Empower People – When facilitating workshops on delegation, I often share that delegation does not mean abdication of responsibility, but rather development of others. You influence team members when you help them see their potential and create development paths to reach their potential. As a result, team members are more engaged, and the organization succeeds.
Reproduce People – Leaders who reproduce themselves in others raise their influence to a whole new level. This is about being willing to create new leaders to succeed you. By doing so, it ensures a positive future for yourself, your team, and the organization.
To increase your ability to create more positive results through your influence, rate yourself against these 10 principles. Then identify 2-3 specific actions you will take.
Lisa Holden Rovers is the Founder of Workplace Matters, a coaching, training and assessment company. She helps individuals and organizations to grow their leadership influence and build stronger, more cohesive teams. Curious how Lisa can support you or your organization? Contact her for a complimentary discovery session to discuss your unique situation and challenges.