Law #2 – The Law of Influence
The true measure of leadership is influence – nothing more, nothing less.
On one hand this makes obvious sense imo – on the other hand I think it can be a bit confusing and I’ve had to think about this one a bit.
A Simple Definition of influence (according to the Merriam Webster dictionary)
: the power to change or affect someone or something : the power to cause changes without directly forcing them to happen
: a person or thing that affects someone or something in an important way
Part of what this sparks for me is the ultimate question of – are we really making an impact with our work? This is the question that really matters as a purpose led entrepreneur.
And to answer that question we need to consider our influence.
- Do our clients respect what we have to say? What we are bringing to the table? Are they taking action or making changes based on the work we are doing together? This is as important for someone who is a perceived leader – ie: a speaker – as it is for someone providing services that aren’t always seem as leadership positions. Ie: a bookkeeper aiming to help her clients be profitable.
- Are we influencing our team to do great work? Do you feel like they hear, honor and take action based on your leadership or is it more of an “I can’t make them do what needs to get done” scenario.
- Are we closing sales? Or are you having conversations that feel good – may even be great! – but people aren’t hiring you.
If we aren’t making an impact on the people around us – be it clients, team or otherwise – that is a leadership issue. If people aren’t taking action or making changes based on the work you are doing together that is an leadership issue. If you feel like the tail is wagging the dog that is a leadership issue.
I’m curious – what is the impact you want to have on your clients? On your team? How strong is your level of influence at this time?
For me I would say I’m about a 7 on all counts. When I’m purposeful I can influence people around me in a big way and that number goes up. When I’m passive, in doubt or confused then my influence wanes.
Who can you influence today?