The ability to influence people is a skill that is incredibly important in organisations today.
You can’t just be a leader. You also have to be a great influencer. In order to influence people, you have to understand them, and you have to build relationships with them. To do that, you have to listen to what they have to say, and you have to understand what their motivations are. The value of influence in the workplace is clear: it can help you get a raise, a promotion, or even a good reference. It can even help you move to the job that you really want. In addition, having a strong network of peers can help you find a new job or switch careers.
The key to success is to be consistent with your approach and persistent in the long run. You can’t expect to be successful immediately; it takes time to build an audience. Be consistent with your approach and make sure you’re doing it for the right reasons.
Here are some tips to help you become more influential at work.
We all have a tendency to be our own worst enemy when it comes to communication. Sometimes when we’re talking, we’re really just thinking about what we’re going to say next instead of listening to what the other person has to say. If you’re having a conversation with someone, listen to what they’re saying instead of planning your reply while they’re talking. The most important thing with active listening is to let the person you’re listening to know that you’ve heard what they’re saying. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to agree with them, but you should acknowledge that you’ve heard their point of view.
Since having your opinion heard is rare, listening with sincerity will likely make you more influential.
Behave with integrity
If you have integrity, you’ll never have to worry about what others think about you. It’s an important quality to have at the workplace because it’s not easy to build a strong reputation and it can be difficult to keep one. The more your values influence your actions, the more you are living your life from a place of coherence, and the more you will be in alignment with who you truly are. When you live your life from a place of coherence, you radiate a sense of integrity and you build trust with those around you. Integrity is not solely about doing the right thing. It’s about doing the right thing when the right thing is difficult.
Be honest and trustworthy
If you tell someone that you’re going to respond to their email or message within a certain timeframe, do it. If you say you’re going to follow up with them with an answer, do it. If you want to build an audience, be the sort of person that people can count on. Don’t give people a reason to doubt you. As you become more and more of a dependable presence in your industry, you will start to earn the respect of the community and your peers. You will then be able to build meaningful relationships with them and open the doors to opportunities you might not have had access to before.
Find out about others
By asking people about themselves, you’re not only giving them a chance to talk about themselves, you’re also learning about them so that you can tailor your interaction to best suit their needs. Be genuinely interested in the people you work with and make an effort to learn about who they are and what they do. It’s a lot easier to build influence with your colleagues if you’re interested in them and their work and actually take an interest in their lives.
Engaging with others allows you to create the right opportunities to share your knowledge, network with others and build relationships. If you’re not engaging with others at the workplace, then you’re passively giving up your opportunity to influence them.
Be consistent with your output. The more consistent you are, the more your colleagues will get used to seeing your name or seeing your work in the workplace. Over time, if you keep producing good work, you’ll start to build a reputation for yourself and people will trust you.
Let others be heard
You need to make sure everyone is heard and understood. As much as you’d like to share your ideas, pause and ask for someone else to introduce or share a suggestion. Making sure those around you are heard and understood empowers them and makes them feel included in the process. It shows that you value their opinions and that you’re not just trying to impose your own.
Whether you’re a boss looking to lead your team, or you’re just starting out and looking to make a name for yourself in the industry, you can start building your influence at work with these pointers. We’re all aware of the power of influence in today’s society, and it’s more important than ever to understand it.
Need guidance on boosting your influence at your workplace? Partner with an Innade Coach today.