Have you ever really stopped to consider how influential you are?
Now, we’re not necessarily talking dancing TikTok-ers here, but rather your influence in the workplace.
Sure, a lot of influence comes from power – your title can play an important role in how much sway you have within an organisation, and even outside of it. But it’s also incredibly important – especially for women! – to realise their superpowers of influence, and to use them consciously every day.
Because every single interaction you have in the workplace is a potential touchpoint for current and future influencing.
So often, influencing is not just about a single moment in time, or a single conversation. Your influence can be authentically and easily built up over time, so that your Influence Capital is ready to support you, no matter the conversation to be had, and no matter the audience.
Here are some practical ways we can intentionally build up our influence, and take supportive action every day that feels genuine to us (and not sneaky or manipulative!)
Build Trust – Walk the Talk
One of the key foundations of influence is trust. When people can rely on you, and know that you have the organisation’s best interest at heart, and you do exactly as you say you will to the best of your ability, people are more likely to trust what you say when the conversation really matters.
Show people that you are truly listening to what they are saying, not just when you are trying to influence them, but all of the time. It shows that you understand their concerns, their hopes, their priorities, and that you will take these into account when it really matters, no matter if the outcome is favourable to them in the end or not. Feeling understood, consulted, and heard are key components of buy-in!
Build Relationships, Connections and Allies
Develop a Meta Mindset for your organisation – this is what leaders want to see from more junior people who are influencing them. Make it your job to know the organisation, its strategy and goals, instead of just your area, and know all the people involved. When putting forward a proposal to upper management, if you haven’t had the opportunity or the proximity to build trust with them, show them that you understand the business deeply, what really matters, and that other more influential or connected allies are supporting you in your proposal. And then, walk the talk, my friend!
And a last one that is often overlooked:
Giving Influence = Getting Influence
Just like giving respect to receive respect, give influence to receive influence. You gain influence by other people seeing how you influence others. So if you’re managing a team, make sure you’re raising them up into the spotlight as much as possible, because this light reflects back on you just as strongly. (If you like this, have a listen to the TedX Talk from Teresa de Grosbois!).
Think the women in your company or organisation would benefit from knowing and discussing these concepts and more? I have a brand new 90 minute workshop on “Paths to Influence” directed especially at women and emerging leaders:
“No matter your personality or position in an organisation, we can all learn how to consciously tap into our innate superpowers of influence, and even learn new skills to thoughtfully motivate ourselves and others towards a desirable outcome for all.
In this interactive and thought-provoking workshop, we explore your current strategies for influencing and engaging others, dig into your strengths and uncover new skills and abilities that you can leverage to authentically grow your influence as a leader.
Learn new ways of planning and leading intentional conversations, no matter who your audience is, and engage confidently and clearly with decision-makers in your organisation, all the way up to the C-Suite!”
Reach out to me right here to find out more about this and other leadership and career development topics – I’ve got your back!