How do people make personality judgments about others? When we decide how we feel about someone, we make not just one judgment, but two. The two criteria are “strength” and “warmth.” Strength is a person’s capacity to make things happen with ability and force of will. When people project strength, they command our respect. Warmth, on the other hand, is the sense that a person shares our feelings, interests and view of the world. When people project warmth, we like and support them.
An influential leader knows how to tap into both strength and warmth.
In his book “The Elements of Power” Terry Bacon shares his research that identifies leadership skills.
The influence skills fall into four categories: Communication and reasoning, assertiveness, interpersonal and interactive. We all have a proclivity toward a couple of these skills and can choose to learn to leverage the others.
Communication and Reasoning skills include the ability to think logically, creativity and innovation, questioning, being a good conversationalist, being energetic and engaged and being an active listener.
Assertiveness Skills include presenting an idea with confidence, being insistent and tenacious, knowing one’s purpose, projecting authority, having a strong and resonant voice, confident body language and being the authority.
Interpersonal Skills include being engaging, being authentic, intuitive understanding of people, being empathetic, conveying trust and inspiring others.
Interaction Skills include being persuasive, managing conflict, building consensus, being a good teacher/coach, negotiation, willingness to ask others for favors and willingness to do favors for others.
Just like any skill, influence skills can be learned by leaders.
Learn more about developing your influence skills at Having It All: Secrets Successful Women Know to be Relevant, Credible and Influential http://www.havingitallforwomen.com/