Leadership Update - February 2009

Influence for Leaders and Negotiators

It seems to me that much which is written about influence in the fields of leadership and negotiation, is not actually talking about influence at all.

In leadership, writers regularly confuse soft forms of authority with the exercise of influence. And in negotiations, what many authors call influence is really just manipulation and self-promotion. This is why the list of things to do to be more influential which invariably accompany these writings, are often unhelpful and vacuous.

And often the key missing ingredient in descriptions of influence is any mention of the issue of purpose – I do not believe that you can ever leave purpose out of the equation when describing influence.

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