Music, fashion, and even food can influence what we do and buy. Remember the 'Rachel hair' from the 1990s and 2000s? As humans, we naturally look to others for influence and to help make decisions, at both home and work.
Many people say that one of their teachers may have had a profound influence on the course of their lives. Teachers are often on the front-line, not just teaching subject matter but trying to foster a love of education and life skills. For some, teachers provide the needed push out of poverty.
Think back to your childhood. It's easy to remember the 'bad' teachers--the ones that were mean or angry or who piled on tons of meaningless homework. Or the ones that didn't seem to care or were too busy to see you as a person.
But try to think back to a teacher that had a positive influence on your life. A good teacher taught you to love something, whatever it was. A good teacher taught you to be passionate and to care about that something, whether it was art, or science, or athletics or learning itself.
Chances are if you had a 'good' teacher, you remember his or her name and what impact they had on your life.
“A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.”
Some people are fortunate enough to have also worked for influential leaders. A leader that gets you fired up and excited about working. Someone that makes you want to do better and be more. You can have this same positive impact in your workplace, with a little work and commitment.
A great boss is a good influencer. He or she understands what is going on with another person, and how to draw them in subtly, to ensure engagement. Influence is the ability to give the person you are trying to impact a framework of priorities. This framework can help eliminate potential conflicts, which can help people make better decisions.
Respect is a critical element of influence. You may think you've figured someone out, and you have already mentally put the person in a box. We often make very quick first impressions, and you might be reluctant to change your mind. But look again; you might be overlooking greatness.
How Influence relates to Agility
Influence is one of 4 pillars under the competency of Agility in the . Building influence is vital in today's Imagination Age. Employees are going to follow leaders that can help them and teach them, not those with the longest or biggest titles.
5 Tips for Influence
- Learn to speak with conviction
- Improve your listening ability
- Limit feelings of resentment, jealousy, and envy
- Accept you cannot influence everyone
- Be respectful towards others
As a leader, you want to influence rapid waves of innovation with the ability to quickly adjust to the unexpected. It would certainly be fun if everyone suddenly emulated your hairstyle, but wouldn't you rather foster a culture of respect and creativity to increase productivity in your workplace?
Influence others with more than your hair! A good teacher has a positive influence on your life, and so can a good leader. A leader that fosters an environment of respect will influence greatness in others.