chapter  6
28 Pages

Gaining Influence

Looking back at Chapter 1 and the mind map of influential leaders you created (see Figure 6.1), how do you currently stand with your identified skills for improvement, leadership traits, and your overall progress? This mind map will start each chapter to guide what this book teaches and to give you the opportunity to compare your goals and progress along your journey. Always have an open discussion with your group on where you stand and whether you have any roadblocks.

What is your reason for wanting to gain influence over your colleagues? Do you need to buy in on a particular initiative that you are leading? Chances are there are multiple goals that you have, but this list must be prioritized in order to be effective and not stretch your resources. A simple prioritization is listing your time constraints and the potential benefits in order. Aim for the low-hanging fruit first and tackle larger goals that are more complex afterward. Building momentum will enable you to tackle these more complex goals when you run into challenges (and you more than likely will). Perhaps, the people you worked with in your first few initiatives can be of assistance. Never assume everyone you interact with can be of assistance to you in some way; some will want to help, while others may not, and some may surprise you and even volunteer. When you realize this lesson, you are effectively lessening the burden on yourself and freeing up some time and energy that can be used elsewhere. Many tradeoffs are made when gaining influence over others. There is never a situation where you have to do something or else you lose. There is always room to reasses both parties’ wants, needs, goals, and renegotiate. Most people listen to reason, and if you can tell them a compelling story why they should cooperate, chances are they will. This chapter will explain the “what is in it for me” and “why should I listen to you