While teaching leadership or marketing courses, I often have the thought…Leading people and marketing are really the same activity. Isn’t the primary objective of both to influence people in the direction of a goal?Now some of you may challenge that statement! True, marketing and leadership could sometimes be an activity of manipulation, and not of influence. We have seen and experienced this many times in both marketing and leadership.Both activities, influence and manipulation, have power. The key is that only one has sustainability. Manipulation can be an effective influencing tactic, but it is not sustaining; in fact, it is exhausting!Influence, on the other hand, is nurturing, motivating, and full of momentum. Great, so how do we do it? How do we really influence others?Reflecting on the power of influence, I’ve come up with some key ways we can gain influence with those we lead:
- Authenticity – live in integrity, honesty, and truth
- Respect – we have to give it to receive it.
- Power – referent power is sustaining.
- Communication – most especially, active engagement through power listening.
- Presence – not presents! Actually, the gift of being fully present to someone is the best present you could give.
- Honor and value – again, we must give it to receive it.
- Strong sense of self – with a strong internal compass and vision.
- Confidence – sometimes comes from experience, not to be confused with arrogance.
- Wisdom – insight gained through self-reflection, not to be confused with education.
- Love – feeling it, living it, and demonstrating it.
I would love to hear from you. What else would you add to the list?With love,Maria