Few things in life are more valuable than influence. Authentic Leaders know that the essence of leadership is not authority, it is influence. If you have to ability to influence another person you have the ability to lead. If you have the ability and willingness to be a positive influence on other people then you have the ability to be an Authentic Leader.
Professional Selling is all about influence. When a customer calls wanting to buy your product that is not selling, that is taking an order. When you influence a prospect’s opinion about your product or service and change it from neutral or negative to a positive opinion, that is selling.
The most successful people intentionally work to increase their level of influence in all settings. Whether it’s work, a social setting, or a team setting influence is the currency of success. Business success and personal success both come from possessing influence.
One of the fastest is to increase your level of influence is to be genuinely curious about other people. Think about this…when you meet new people who are you talking about? Are you talking about the other person or are you talking about yourself?
Work at developing the skill of making the conversation about others, not about you. You are more attractive to other people when they feel valued in your presence. When they feel valued by you then your level of influence goes up.
Now here’s something that I need to repeat. Be GENUINELY curious about other people. This is not about manipulating people or fooling them into thinking you care about them. This is about increasing YOUR level of influence by truly caring about THEM.
Enter into these relationships with the intention of learning from others. Ask questions and listen intently to the answers. Linger on the words of the speaker until you’re certain you understand what was said.
People who listen intently learn more and that knowledge increases their level of influence.
Always be relatable. No matter what you’ve accomplished in life never lose your humility. Humility is a critical characteristic of Authentic Leadership and makes you more relatable to the people you lead. Humility makes you more authentic to people and actually increases your level of influence with them.
Never forget the power of influence. Once you’ve earned a high level of influence never forget the responsibility to ensure the influence you have on others is positive. If your influence helps other people overcome their challenges and succeed then you’ll truly have the kind of influence that makes a difference in the world.