Leadership: How to Influence More Effectively

Last week, a coachee who had been described as a bright spark and full of potential by her manager, commented at how disappointed she was in not getting the support of a key stakeholder for a new initiative.

In her view, it was a project full of potential – the benefits of which she thought would have been obvious to him.

She said she was surprised at how things turned out because they had worked together and he knew the issues they were facing in the industry. “I expected him to just get it,” but clearly this was not the case.

Can you see what may be wrong here?

No doubt, this example could be peeled back and looked at from several vantage points but the one I specifically want to address is how our conversation proceeded next.

I asked my coachee – “So what do you know about is dear to his heart, the goals and outcomes that really matter to him?”

My coachee looked at me like I had just reported that someone had landed from Mars!  She went quiet for what seemed a long time and then said, “You know what, I had not even considered that.”

Then she smiled and said something along the lines of “Okay – I have some work to do, don’t I?”

I know my client isn’t alone in her approach here.

So here’s a question for you –

How much time do you spend thinking about ‘What is in it for the other party’ before you launch in with your brilliant idea or exciting proposal to your manager or another key stakeholder?

A bit of time spent up front, doing your homework and preparing your delivery could potentially save you from a straight “NO” or at the very least, leave the door open for further discussions and inroads.

Doing this exercise will get you thinking from the stakeholder’s perspective and perhaps even creating a better framework for a win-win outcome.

In future blogs, I will be covering other topics related to influencing effectively.

“If you enjoyed this post, then I have some good news for you… in the near future, I will be releasing a brand-new pilot course, Influencing for Success.

It will go much deeper into the subject of influence, and give you the right mindset, tools, and strategies to advance your career and influence with greater impact.

Would that be something you’re interested in? If so, then leave me your name and email address here and I will get in touch once ready.

CLICK HERE to get notified about the  Influencing for Success Course
Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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