If you want to get the best out of your team, knowing how to influence people is essential. Influencing people is not about telling people that it’s your way or the highway, it’s about listening, building trust, and inspiring them with your vision so they remain motivated and committed to helping you reach your business goals.
The don’ts of influencing
Influencing is a skill that most people need to learn. It’s not about:
Using fear or your status to make your team do things will only work when you’re around giving them a nudge. An influential leader will make people want to work towards business goals by inspiring them to do so.
Being on someone’s back constantly to do something is most likely to annoy them, and rather than doing what you want them to, your instructions will just become white noise and they’ll become less productive.
Failing to listen
Influencing someone is not about talking at someone until they relent. Make sure you listen to their suggestions and concerns and you’re far more likely to get a favourable outcome.
The do’s of influencing
If your employees trust you, and you’re open, honest, and fair, it’s far more likely that you’ll be able to influence them, without having to resort to fear or pulling rank to get them to do something. Where there’s trust, people are far more likely to do what’s expected of their own free will.
Consistency means reliability, and if people know what to expect from you, they’re more likely to go along with your ideas and suggestions. So set expectations and consistently reward employees for a job well done, and it will be far easier to get them on side.
Being assertive when you speak to employees, and putting your ideas across with confidence will help you increase your authority and influence. But remember that assertiveness is not the same as aggression. If you come across as arrogant or as a bully, you could lose the respect of your team and your ability to influence them.
Clinging to rigid beliefs can reduce the influence you have on people, while if you show others that you’re willing to work with them to find solutions that are acceptable for all concerned, they’ll be more likely to listen to what you have to say.
If you distance yourself from your employees, you can lose their respect and trust, and this can hugely affect any chance you have of being influential. Make sure you take time to interact with your employees and show them that you value them. Be one of the team and be approachable, and they’ll be much more receptive to you.
Listen to others:
Listening to other people’s ideas and opinions and respecting them makes them feel valued. When people feel listened to and respected, this builds trust and a sense of being a team. You’ll also gain respect and influence as a leader.
Long-term meaningful success is not gained by asserting dominance or ruling by fear. If you can be anything in your business, seek to be influential. That is the road to success for you and your team.
Struggling with this or other employee issues, then happy to have a chat. Just email to arrange.