In some of my personal leadership development processes, I try to measure how I am doing as it relates to influencing other people. Dictionary.com defines influence as: “the capacity or power of persons or things to be a compelling force on or produce effects on the actions, behavior, opinions, etc., of others.” There is nothing wrong with trying to have this affect on other people, as long as the influence is positive in nature.
Below is a list of some things that I think are vital to being a person of influence. Read through them and ask yourself how you are doing with your family, your friends and in your faith community. Are you a positive influencer?
Bring value: be sure that you add to the lives of the people around you. Are they better off because you are there? Make sure to add, not subtract, from the people in your life.
Encourage: build up the folks you know. There are enough downers in life. Once someone knows you are an encourager, your influence will grow immensely.
Share wisdom: when given the opportunity, give out lessons you’ve learned and advice you have received. Most of the time, we have to be invited to do so or else we become overbearing. But if something you know can prevent pain in someone’s life, share it.
Be steady: Huge emotional swings will destroy any credibility you may have. Conversely, if you are perceived as balanced and steady, people will trust you enough to allow you to influence them.
Be consistent: there is no substitute for a proven commodity. Time reveals strength. Pay your dues and stick with it over the long haul. You will find yourself being influential.
Succeed: It’s simple- if you produce, people will listen to you. Failure has a way of wrecking our credibility.
Display integrity: be honest, be fair, have character. Enough said.
Be loyal: if you can show that you have someone’s back, you will earn the right to be heard by them.
Serve: the display of a servant’s heart is a great way to win the confidence of someone you would like to influence.
Care: show that you truly care about people. If they know that you are not in this to get something in return, you will gain influence in their lives.
These are just a few ideas on how you can increase your positive influence in the lives of the people around you. And isn’t that one of the reasons we are put in this earth – to influence in a good way?