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When it comes to leadership and personal growth there are so many skills and new habits to adopt. You may want the secret sauce, the BIG answer, the one thing that will change who you are and what you do to become successful. It rarely, if ever happens that way.
What I’ve learned (over the years) change takes time. I’m talking about the kind of change that you embrace, comes across as authentic and you do without effort. Learning any new skill takes consciousness but eventually becomes effortless.It's never one skill that helps you rise, it's multiple skills and putting all the pieces together… Click To Tweet
Let’s discuss some of the changes that make a great leader and influencer with themselves and others. It’s similar to a puzzle-so many piece make up the picture. Similarly, so many skills make up a great leader or influencer. No one puzzle piece is more important than the other. The pieces touch each other, are connected and support one another.
1. Interest Piece
Genuine interest in others is the strong foundation to support a relationship. Whether your in sales, an entrepreneur or leading any size group of people, interest in the other person builds the relationship.
When you show interest in others, they feel valued and respected. They also get the sense that your agenda is not greater than them. This is powerful and where most people fail. Because it creates trust. And trustworthy people get the favor, sale, extra work, referrals and more.
One of the first questions I ask a new coaching client, either for business or leadership, is how well do you know the people you work with or sell to? Do you know the names of their children and pets? (Typically I get that dumfound look.)
2. Generation Piece
Today, there can be up to 5 different generations that you’re working with and more that you might be selling to.
Understanding who they are and what they value is key to working, selling, educating and learning from. Each generation values different things based on a few factors, such as how they were raised, the technology that they grew up with and the stresses they observed from other generations before them.
I personally have traits from two neighboring generations because I was born near the cusp. I have been known to work many hours, sometimes 7 days a week but have added in activities and moments that aid to destress and self care. (I’m writing this blog in the early hours of a Sunday morning. And those you who know me well, I exercise 5-6 days a week to stay healthy and energetic.)
3. Awareness Piece
There are so many messages that are said and not said. Being aware of those non verbal cues and reading people’s body language is key to influencing others.
As a coach, who uses the phone to work with clients who are not in the area, I hear things like the big sigh, the change in tone, rate, clearing the throat and the choice of certain words over another. This prompts me to ask the right questions to uncover what’s going on and what needs to be addressed.
If you’re an entrepreneurs, solo-preneur or in sales, you know how valuable it is to read the situation, energy in the room and the people you are working with.Be interested in them more than your agenda. Engaging in your customer, clients & prospects… Click To Tweet
The above is not a complete list of the skills you need to influence others but a sampling of the puzzle pieces you’ll need. High achiever, over time, create large puzzles with numerous pieces. This is why my second book, Rethink Your Leadership, there are puzzle pieces on the cover. It takes time to learn and master each piece of the puzzle. With each piece that you master and add to your growing puzzle, the better leader you become. Creating that puzzle does not happen overnight and can not be mastered in a one day workshop. The main mentor in Rethink Your Leadership understands this and intentionlly only shares one puzzle piece at a time for the main character to learn. Then it’s time to put that skill to use before they meet again, when another puzzle piece is revealed.
What pieces are in your puzzle?
What pieces are you working on?
What pieces are missing today?
What will your puzzle ultimately look like in the end?