Influence

When you’re advancing in a corporate environment, you, of course, spend a lot of time hearing about persuasion and influence being big parts of your success or failure in the company and that’s very true. However, many people make the mistake of thinking that persuasion and influence are the same thing. That, my friends, is far from the truth. Yes, they are both a means to an end and many times they involve swaying opinions, but there is one thing that I believe influence has that persuasion does not use and that is your reputation.

What do you mean, my reputation?
I mean that anyone can persuade another person with some slick graphics and the right words, but when you’re working on changing minds through influence, likely the people you’re working with know you, or at least they know your reputation. Influence involves trust and a relationship, where persuasion deals more with solid facts and figures manipulated to get the desired outcome. When it comes to influence, your reputation is your best asset.

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We’ve all got to use to use them: our words. There’s no way anything would get done if we didn’t communicate at all and it’s comical to even imagine a business functioning where no one speaks or writes at all. So, of course, you use words to communicate, but have you ever stopped to think about the words you are using to communicate and how they affect the outcome of what you’re trying to say. Here are a few examples of what to say and what not to say when trying to persuade your peers or team on a particular subject.

DO NOT use negative words like can’t, don’t, won’t when presenting a topic (and, yes, I see the irony of putting this in the do not section).

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Building a Successful Team

by Karen Keller, Ph.D.

If you want to success in business, of course, you have to be willing to put the work in and practice excellent influence throughout all aspects of your career, but you’ve also got to make sure that you’re surrounded by an excellent team of people that work well together and have a common goal of success in their career. I like to think of building a successful team as I would for constructing any solid building.

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If you’ve found any success in your career, chances are you’ve always been able to wield some sort of influence over people and you’ve likely kept your influence muscles well-honed over the years. But if you really want to wow upper level management, you’re going to need to pull out the influence “big guns” next time you’re in the board room.

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Set the Stage for Influence Success

by Karen Keller, Ph.D.

Shakespeare said it best: “All the world’s a stage and the men and women are merely players.” This is very true, I believe, but there’s no saying that you can’t have a lead role in your company’s “production.” So what’s the key to playing the star at your company?

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Smart business requires you to connect and network. You have the choice to align with people who can help you and people who won’t do much for you. Surprisingly, many people in business spend way too much time with people who don’t or won’t help them. Then they wonder why things aren’t moving forward for[...]

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7 Sources of Negative Self-Talk

by Karen Keller, Ph.D.

What happens when your core beliefs are negative? Nothing good. Negative, or self-limiting, beliefs create barriers for you on several fronts. They lead to procrastination and laziness. Negative beliefs habitually destroy your hopes and aspirations. Your morale suffers. So does your self-confidence and self-worth. Non-supportive beliefs make you lose your focus distracting you from your[...]

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It’s commonly known that the acronym KISS stands for “Keep it simple, stupid.” Well, I’ve gone ahead and modified it to be a little more effective by saying, “Keep it smart, stupid.” The KISS principle, while it shouldn’t be used every time in every situation, definitely has its place in the world of business. Where[...]

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5 Steps to Confront a Situation

by Karen Keller, Ph.D.

Every person faces confrontation. Some face it better than others. You know what it feels like when a person gets in your face, yelling about what you did wrong. Then this person proceeds to tell you what to do next in order to correct things. It’s awful. Unexpected. Embarrassing. But there’s the flip side. What[...]

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Every person is a born leader with leadership skills waiting to be developed. You lead your life, your family, your friends, and your work colleagues. For centuries executives have stood in the face of confrontation and conflict. They are called to leadership action. They want to make a difference. Executives are designed to solve problems.[...]

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