“You don’t have to be a ‘person of influence’ to be influential. In fact, the most influential people in my life are probably not even aware of the things they’ve taught me.” Scott Adams
At this very moment I am attending a leadership conference with GLN (Global Leadership Network). Only a couple hours ago, the president of the organization, Tom De Vries, said that perhaps the key attribute to great leaders was found in their ability to “influence” others.
Influence is Common
It quickly occurred to me the same was true for all of us, leaders or not. Parents, coaches, best friends, grand acquaintances, and even strangers all influence our world views, style, and habits. This makes sense when we consider that we, as a people, are most often imitators at best and mimickers at worst. We do as we see and hear, not necessarily as we are taught in an educational setting.
Consider the parenting. A child will behave according to what the child witnesses, not how the child is told to behave.
Your Influence is Not Always Obvious
So… I wonder… Have you ever considered how you influence others? You do influence, you know. People watch you. They process your actions and attitudes. They hear about your philosophies and your beliefs. The agree, disagree, or maybe even they consider your idea as new and provocative. Everyone influences others in one way or another. Sometimes you even influence how someone else chooses “not to behave.” Oh well.
Just about everything you do matters to someone else. Why not, then, accept your influential role in lives of the people around you? Accept that responsibility. Know that your life never belongs to you alone.
Think About It
I encourage a time of self-evaluation. How is it that you influence others? The truth is the options are as many as there are grains of sand. I think it all comes down to you being the very best you, you can be. A few thought-questions may help…
- What are your deepest core values and are you living consistently with those values?
- What do you want “to be known as?” Do you have a legacy objective?
- Who do you most admire and why? How does that person influence you?
- What behaviors in others repulse you the most? Avoid those behaviors at all costs.
Yes. You matter, indeed, to many people.
Once again, it all comes down to choice. How you choose to behave may make the life of another even more pleasant and more meaningful. What a privilege!
A Most Common Attribute
Photo courtesy of digitalskillet at istockphoto