About Influencing Without Positional Power


What is your intention and why do you want to influence someone. Clearly define how your desired outcome would benefit the other party, as well as your organization and yourself.


When you consider the issue or opportunity you are trying to guide the team or individual to consider, think about it from the other party’s perspective. What are their needs? What drives them? Considering the perspective of the other party is not only crucial to successful influencing, it also leads to trust and confidence that you have other people’s best interests at heart.


Trust is a key differentiator between influence and manipulation. Building trust by being respectful and honest in each interaction creates cumulative goodwill, which makes it easier to exert your influence going forward as others will have confidence in you and know that you have their best interests at heart.


People can tell when you’re being disingenuous or flattering without sincerity. Consistently acting from a place of authenticity makes you more honouring and credible. It also establishes you as having the capacity to compliment and be generous.


The principle of reciprocity fits in nicely with the idea of strong ongoing relationships; you often have to give as much as you take. Reciprocity can play out over time especially with those that you work with on an ongoing basis. People are more likely to do something for you now if they feel confident that you may support them at a later date.

Try the alternative to the Golden Rule – the Platinum Rule

According to Dr. Tony Alessandra: “Treat others the way they want to be treated.” Ah hah! What a difference. The Platinum Rule accommodates the feelings of others. The focus of relationships shifts from “this is what I want, so I’ll give everyone the same thing” to “let me first understand what they want and then I’ll give it to them.”

As powerful as it is, influence comes down to how people see us as individuals, how well our ideas resonate with others and how well we frame our ideas in terms of others’ needs and problems. Strong influence can give you access to people’s hearts and minds in the form of commitment and trust-these can be the ultimate resource in becoming effective as a leader in your organization while empowering others to execute your vision in a trusting and supportive environment.