In my last post, we looked at the beginning point of expanding your influence with others. It all begins with allowing God's influence to permeate your life before attempting to expand out into other's lives. Once this has taken place, how do we influence others on a practical, everyday level [Source: Business summaries - John Maxwell]:
- Integrity. It's difficult to be much of an influence on others if you don't have integrity. When people can trust you as a person, then they will welcome your efforts at influencing them and adding value to their lives. When you speak, people need to know that you personally believe in what your saying and that they can believe what your telling them.
- Nurture. Why do you think most parents have a strong influence in their children's lives? Because the best parents understand the importance of nurturing their kids. They love on them through their words and physical touch. They treat them with respect by validating their feelings, preferences, opinions, and contributions. They give them a sense of security. They give recognition to their accomplishments. Finally, their children are supported and given encouragement. When we desire to have an influence in those around us, we need to have the attitude and actions similar to that of nurturing parents.
- Faith. A person of influence believes in others, even before success takes place. You have faith that the people around you can win. You are able to draw success out of them by instilling confidence and expecting them to rise to the occasion.
- Listen. If you want to have influence, you need to be a good listener. When you are a good listener, you show respect, build relationships, increase knowledge, generate ideas, build loyalty, and help others.
- Understand. A person of influence understands people. They understand that people want to feel important, cared for, encouraged, and believed in. Influential people are good at seeing the perspective of others and demonstrate personal empathy.
- Enlarge. Influential people have a way of coming alongside people and really getting involved in their lives, which involves mentoring. Mentoring is simply moving others to grow and develop their areas of strength.
- Navigate. As you help others grow, you will need to be their navigator by helping them move through unpleasant situations, setbacks, or problems. You help people build bridges to cross from where they are to where they want to go.
- Connect. Connecting with people is essential in the mentoring process. In order to connect, we can't take people for granted. We must initiate movement toward them. We look for common ground between us. We recognize and respect differences in personality. We communicate from the heart. Finally, we share common experiences in our lives.
- Empower. When you empower people, you enable them to reach the highest levels of their personal and professional potential. Demonstrate to others that you believe in them, and trust their decisions. Give them permission to take on challenges. Share your power and delegate your responsibilities. Release them to continue on their own as soon as they are ready.
- Reproduce. Your ultimate goal should be to invest your lives into others, so that they will in turn influence those around them.
In what areas do you need to work on in order to expand your own sphere of influence?