The ability to influence a team is fast becoming a crucial leadership skill. Influence once came with your leadership position, now in many workplaces, your ability to influence determines your success.
Not all leaders influence, yet all influencers lead. Your ability to solicit ideas, change minds, shape opinions, sway decisions and leverage the skillset of your team will determine the success of you, your team or your organisation.
So how do you influence others as a leader? Having worked with some of the most influential leaders in the financial industry I have discovered there are four key similarities in their leadership style. To help you, here are four steps to becoming a leader with influence.
1. Know Yourself
To be an influencer you need to have credibility. You need to be respected and have the knowledge and skills to provide insight to those around you.
To do this you need to have a good understanding of yourself, your strengths and weaknesses, your values and motivations and your leadership style. Developing some of your weaknesses and learning new skills should be a constant in your life.
2. Know Your Outcome
If you want to influence others you need to know the outcome you want to achieve. By knowing your outcome you can provide the clarity needed to move forward, identify the steps that need to be taken, who needs to be involved, how you need to engage them and how you will measure your progress.
Providing a clear picture to all is absolutely critical in having people follow you.
3. Develop Relationships
One key attribute of a leader of influence is the ability to inspire trust. Trust is the foundation for all relationships and it is crucial for influencing the opinions and decisions of others.
To build trust, you need to be credible and trustworthy yourself, developing relationships is critical and will help you achieve your goals, remember there is no I in Team. Act with integrity in all your dealings.
4. Think Collaboratively
A leader of influence knows the power of a team. They understand that by harnessing the collective expertise, experience, skills and ideas of a team they will achieve goals faster – both individually and as an organisation.
Make sure you are thinking collaboratively and utilising the full power of your team. Ensure that you don’t just have the right people within your team or organisation, but the right people in the right roles.
What steps can you take this week to become a leader of influence?