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7 Ways to Build Influence in the Workplace

Influence is power

No matter who you are, where you work, or what your professional goals are, achieving more influence in the workplace is critical for success.

But gaining that influence, like learning a skill, takes time and effort.

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

7 Ways to Build Influence in the Workplace

7 Ways to Build Influence in the Workplace

https://www.inc.com/jayson-demers/7-ways-to-build-influence-in-the-workplace.html

inc.com

8

Key Ideas

Influence is power

No matter who you are, where you work, or what your professional goals are, achieving more influence in the workplace is critical for success.

But gaining that influence, like learning a skill, takes time and effort.

Build Trust

Influence is most often and most easily carried through trust: only when a co-worker trusts you will he or she be open to your influence.

The easiest way to do that is to be honest, no matter what. State your opinions, disclose your apprehensions, and don't keep secrets. 

Reliability Through Consistency

Inconsistency is the fastest way to ruin your reputation. Consistency, on the other hand, is slow but sure: if you execute your tasks effectively and on time, day after day, eventually people will come to rely on you.

Be Assertive

There's a difference between being assertive and being aggressive. 

You'll need to present your thoughts and ideas with a high degree of confidence, indicating your convictions, but any excessive degree of confidence could be mistaken for needless arrogance, which will compromise your perceived authority. 

Be Flexible

Being too stringent or adamant in your beliefs will work against you.

Work actively to show your flexibility while holding firm on your beliefs. Negotiations and compromises are often the best ways to do this.

Be Personal

The key here is to seem imperfect, approachable, and human.

Have personal exchanges with your employees and co-workers. You don't need to build friendships, but there's no reason why you can't get to know each other. Personal working relationships are important for cultivating a sense of team, and if people see you as another person on the team, they'll be more receptive when you disclose your ideas or opinions. 

Focus on Action

Trying to build influence through words is useless. If you're going to build influence in the workplace, you need to speak through your actions, or at the very least have the actions and history to back up whatever it is you're saying.

Listen to Others

Listen to everyone's opinion, and encourage people to speak up, especially if they don't often voice their opinions. Take time to respect and acknowledge everybody's opinion, and let people know that you value them.

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Work on cultivating personal connections with your colleagues, and allow them to get to know you. 

You don’t have to be “the greatest person in the room” or make sure “everyone is blown away by your charisma.” You just need to have good rapport with your colleagues. That way, they won’t impute negative intentions or motives to you.

Listen before you try to persuade
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Start by giving them your undivided attention in one-on-one situations. Turn your body toward the other person, freeze in place, and listen.

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When thinking about social currency, understand that you have value.

You may not be able to pinpoint what is valuable about you. But everyone has value. You can be worth $1, or you can be worth $100. The decision is yours.

Building valuable relationships

Your circle of influence can play a large role in building your social currency.

Before you can build strong connections, understand that connections don’t just happen by chance. Everything you say and do is going to impact your relationships with people, and no one will want to form any type of relationship with you if you don’t demonstrate some type of value (demonstrated by what you think and how consistent you are).

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3 Ways to influence
3 Ways to influence
  • Logical appeals tap into people’s rational and intellectual positions. 
  • Emotional appeals connect your message, goal, or project to individual goals and values..
To choose an influencing tactics:
  • Assess the situation. Be clear about whom you need to influence and what you want to accomplish.
  • Know your audience. Identify and understand your stakeholders and their needs. 
  • Review your ability. What tactics do you use most often?  What new tactics could you try in this situation? 
  • Brainstorm your approach. What tactics would work best? Which logical appeals will be most effective? How could you make an emotional or cooperative appeal?  etc. 
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Awkward Work Scenarios
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  • Isn’t concerned about acquiring or holding onto power.
  • Isn’t focused on maintaining a certain reputation above all else.
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  • Doesn’t think in terms of controlling people at all, really.
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  7. Be a good steward. A steward is someone who holds onto something and keeps it in good condition for others who need it down the road.
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Do a yearly review

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Finish what you started

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Be realistic

Dreaming is great, but if you want to accomplish some improvements, you need to make your dream more realistic.

Break your dream down into milestones: if you want to work from home, what steps do you need to take? Break those steps down further into actionable steps and start working towards making your dream a reality.

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  • Expect from others what you expect from yourself. Never ask for something you're not doing.
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