Six Secrets for Influencing Others and Winning Hearts & Minds

leaders are influencers“A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way.”

John Maxwell

And influencing others is an integral part of this process.

By their very nature leaders are influencers.

But how does one go about influencing their team?

Well, winning hearts and minds is a good start.

Here are six secrets as to how you, as a leader, can do that.

#1 Connect with your team – building up a connection with your team that’s based on trust, empathy and common ground is a great way to win the hearts and minds of your team.  We’re all human, after all.  And if you can get to know the people you’re working with, you’ll understand how they tick.  You’ll realise their core strengths and weaknesses and know precisely how and when to get the best out of them.

#2 Positivity – a positive mindset and outlook is key to winning the hearts and minds of your team.  Positivity is contagious.  It draws people in, motivates them and makes them want to achieve goals.  As a leader your team will perceive you as a motivator, a problem-solver and a supporter.  So, radiating positivity when faced with obstacles and negative reactions is a great trait to adopt.  And the more genuine this positivity is, the less chance there is of negativity chipping away at your team and spreading like wildfire.

#3 Be the stalwart your team look up to – leading by example means that you’ve got to be reliable and consistent.  These qualities go a long way towards winning hearts and minds because your team will respect your attitude, your actions and your opinions.

#4 Welcome change – change is difficult but inevitable.  It’s a common part of day-to-day life in a forward-thinking and dynamic organisation.  And if you want to retain your leadership role within that organisation it’s a good idea to welcome change with open arms.  Be pro-active with any new collaborations, welcome suggestions and be prepared to move with the times.

#5 Communicate – if you’ve taken the time to get to know your team members, then communication helps you to maintain a positive relationship.  Speak to your team instead of hiding behind faceless corporate communications.  Give them clear directions, allow for responses, be a good listener and sympathetic to their needs.  Any breakdown in communication can have cataclysmic consequences and impact significantly on your influential powers.  So try to avoid it at all costs.

#6 Do your homework – any influential power you have is going to be undermined in the minds and eyes of your team if you don’t know all the facts.  I’m sure you’ve come across many leaders and managers who could talk their way out of a paper bag.  But, as soon as these people struggle to substantiate their claims, their credibility vanishes in a puff of smoke – taking their persuasive powers with them.

Hopefully, this insight will have given you much to think about in the quest to winning the hearts and minds of your team.  We’d love to know if you have any suggestions.

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