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How to Influence People

How to Influence What People Do

Relationship skills also increase our ability to influence others. Our influence over others is, of course, affected by many of the leadership qualities that we have previously discussed and also by the degree and kind of power we can draw upon. More specifically to improve your ability to influence others:

• Be sensitive – Learn to observe and listen to understand others’ thoughts and feelings and to learn what they want or need.

• Be flexible – Be prepared to change your approach as needed to make your ideas more acceptable to the other.

• Be congruent – Know what you want and consistently move towards it.

• Establish clear communication goals – Identify specific short-term and long-terms goals for your communication.

• Seek common ground – Seek ways to bring your wishes, needs and goals closer to those of the other person, or to focus on what is common between them.

• Establish and maintain rapport – Create a feeling of harmony and accord between you as a basis for overcoming personal differences.

In trying to understand how we are forming interpersonal relationships, with a view to influencing others; we must consider the three basic components of behaviour:
• cognition - what we think, believe and expect
• emotion - what we feel, fear, need or desire
• action – what we actually do.

Corresponding relating skills can be ordered under: thinking skills, feeling skills and action skills.

Thinking skills include:

• Taking responsibility
• Monitoring your feelings
• Self-knowledge
• Forming realistic expectations
• Establishing priorities
• Forming accurate perceptions
• Explaining things realistically.

Feeling skills include:

• Knowing your feelings
• Empathising with others’ feelings
• Managing your feelings
• Knowing how to express feelings.

Actions skills include:

• Behaving in ways that are consistent with what you say
• Communicating effectively
• Listening actively
• Using body language to support your meaning
• Acting assertively
• Acting appropriately.

How to Influence People.

Relationship skills also increase our ability to influence others. Our influence over others is, of course, affected by many of the leadership qualities that we have previously discussed and also by the degree and kind of power we can draw upon. More specifically to improve your ability to influence others:

• Be sensitive – Learn to observe and listen to understand others’ thoughts and feelings and to learn what they want or need.

• Be flexible – Be prepared to change your approach as needed to make your ideas more acceptable to the other.

• Be congruent – Know what you want and consistently move towards it.

• Establish clear communication goals – Identify specific short-term and long-terms goals for your communication.

• Seek common ground – Seek ways to bring your wishes, needs and goals closer to those of the other person, or to focus on what is common between them.

• Establish and maintain rapport – Create a feeling of harmony and accord between you as a basis for overcoming personal differences.

In trying to understand how we are forming interpersonal relationships, with a view to influencing others; we must consider the three basic components of behaviour:
• cognition - what we think, believe and expect
• emotion - what we feel, fear, need or desire
• action – what we actually do.

Corresponding relating skills can be ordered under: thinking skills, feeling skills and action skills.

Thinking skills include:

• Taking responsibility
• Monitoring your feelings
• Self-knowledge
• Forming realistic expectations
• Establishing priorities
• Forming accurate perceptions
• Explaining things realistically.

Feeling skills include:

• Knowing your feelings
• Empathising with others’ feelings
• Managing your feelings
• Knowing how to express feelings.

Actions skills include:

• Behaving in ways that are consistent with what you say
• Communicating effectively
• Listening actively
• Using body language to support your meaning
• Acting assertively
• Acting appropriately


More Information:

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See our Course on Leadership

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