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Locker Room to Board Room: Leadership Fundamentals Part 3 - Always Be Influencing

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Locker Room to Board Room: Leadership Fundamentals Part 3 - Always Be Influencing

  1. 1. There is not a market for coaching people to have less influence with their customers and teammates, but many people are not purposeful about working on increasing their influence. While you consider my point of view, I would like to make the distinction between influence and manipulation. The difference is simple but not always easy. Influence is achieved only to help your team win and manipulation is pursued to help yourself win, without regard for the success of others. I believe that knowing how to build influence for your team ranks in the top five of leadership skills along with humility, a strong sense of ownership, great listening skills and effective communication. These skills helped me achieve my dream of becoming a professional athlete and to be able to reinvent myself for a second career off the field in the business community. It is not what you know, but who you know is a common phrase used to accentuate the power of influence even over the value of true knowledge. I would never devalue the pursuit of learning but I would highly encourage any professional to make time to learn how to gain influence so you can more easily access resources needed for your team to develop and win. Becoming influential and maintaining influence can feel like a daunting task. An easier way to think about tackling this goal is to break it down to the smaller objective of giving as good, or better, than you are getting from each interaction you have with others. Once you have given the best you can give, let others believe what they wish because you have no control of anyone but yourself. Working through each day with a positive piece of mind focused on how you can help others is a fundamental part of leadership. The one page summary below is Leadership Fundamentals - Part 3: Always Be Influencing. The summary provides a leadership strategy, principle and tactics designed to allow for easy reference and learning for you and your team.
  2. 2. Always be Influencing Take ownership of your situation and making the decision to lead at every level. Taking ownership includes developing and communicating a plan capable of solving the underlying problem. Listen and ask questions more than you talk and give directions. Embrace the power of generous listening and empathetic straight talk. Leadership Fundamentals Part 3 Principle Strategy Tactics (6) 1. Believe that everything is an opportunity Positivity is not necessarily contagious, but it is highly noticeable, so is negativity. Influence begins with an internal positivity that allows you to see EVERYTHING as chances to solve problems and believing that you can provide an effective solution. Showing up is half the battle and teamwork is what the other half is all about. 2. Do not defend, instead apologize Once you have made a mistake avoid the urge to defend your actions or words and instead admit your fault and apologize. Humility is influential and ego is the enemy of getting ahead. People with the power to admit their mistakes gain influence because they counter with a positive attitude and solutions that will help the team recover and regain traction. 3. Set goals that force you to improve At all times you must have at least one goal that requires you to be growing to accomplish it. Every day will not be easy and sometimes you must go through the motions in order to keep moving forward towards becoming the best version of yourself. If you can influence your behavior to have a growth mindset you can influence others to do the same. 4. If your team offers you an opportunity, take it In order to learn and develop new skills you must do things you previously did not know how to do. If an opportunity is offered to you that will help your team succeed, take it, and learn how to do it later. The result is your team progressing towards its shared goals and you improving by gaining new knowledge. 5. Make your layups The easiest shot in basketball is a layup because it is closest to the goal. Once you accept an opportunity on the team, break it into small pieces that you can achieve one after the other until your goal is complete. If you are struggling with a goal, break it down into smaller goals so people can see the progress you are making and where you need help. Visible progress is influential and exciting to be a part of. 6. Set the stage so others can perform After all the hard work it takes to build a stage the tendency is to want to stand on it and perform. Influence is earned by stepping aside and allowing other interested teammates to have the spotlight. You can spend your time trying to become and remain the king or gain influence by being a king maker. Great leaders are humble and know how to build trust. Great books that support these ideas: • Leadership Charisma by Bud Haney&Jim Sirbasku w/Deiric McCann • Start with Why by Simon Sinek • The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni Influence tips for new leaders: • Continually give the gift of undivided attention. Calls, texts or emails can wait. • Know what you believe in so others can have something valuable to follow • Influence is all about your mindset and being positive is a choice • People are attracted to positive people no matter what direction they’re going • Maintaining a positive mindset is a power that creates positive outcomes What is Influence? Influence is the capacity to have an effect on the character, development, or behavior of someone or something, or the effect itself. The opposite is to be helpless, dull and weak. What does effective influence accomplish? • The ability to ask and acquire the resources your team needs in a timely manner • Working with your team to accomplish more than you can ever achieve alone • Having the chance for relationships that are inspirational instead of transactional How do leaders know their influence is effective? • Your team is gaining trust in you and you are gaining trust in your team • Your team understands what you are trying to accomplish and helps you succeed • Your team is improving as a result of your interactions with them Personal Influence Team Influence Locker Room to Board Room Marcus Wilkins mwilkins@marcuswilkins.biz MW Leadership Fundamentals Part 3

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