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Improve your influence skills in 3 easy steps!

Posted by on July 25, 2011

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Often we get stuck in a situation where simply asking is not enough to gain cooperation from someone else. Perhaps it’s a store clerk who is always grumpy and unwilling to help, a co-worker who thinks you’re pushy, or even someone on the homeowner’s association board you have to reach agreement with.

There are so many interactions that call for a skillful, targeted application of influence skills without positional power. How can you resolve these situations to the satisfaction of both parties?influence skills

Many books have been written, classes taught, and conferences held on this very topic. There are different influence styles out there, and you can get pretty fancy with your planning. But you know you’re going to run into that person today! How are you going to handle it? Rest assured, you can improve your influence skills in 3 easy steps—right now!

  1. Step 1: Go in knowing what your influence objective is. Are you hoping to get a discount? Do you want help on a special project? Would you like to finally pass that bylaw?
  2. Step 2: Prepare yourself to listen to the other person’s needs. Do they want something out of this? What are they worried about?
  3. Step 3: Be prepared to be flexible. You will likely get what you’re asking for, but perhaps in a modified way. Or, the other person may ask for something in return. This is to be expected, and if you are willing to bend, they will be just as happy with the final agreement as you are.

Of course, this is the just the tip of the iceberg. Truly great influence skills must be learned and practiced, ideally in a classroom setting. CGWA is proud to offer the Positive Power and Influence program, which expertly guides participants through the process of becoming savvy influencers.