Showing posts with label influence. Show all posts
Showing posts with label influence. Show all posts

Monday, January 12, 2015

Use Positive Optimism to Expand Your Career Opportunities

Optimism attracts people and those who can gather together the greatest amount of people enhance their social influence. Those who are in business can enhance their social networks and attract more people to their cause simply through being more positive about life. Positive contacts not only help build your social networks but also enhance future career opportunities.

Positive impressions helps others to feel good about themselves and their prospects. If people are willing to spend millions on cosmetic products, tickets for sports games, branded clothing, and the other luxuries of life to feel good they will also be attracted to a positive person who helps them feel this way. For the low price a few moments of time they can walk away with positive impressions for a while without experiencing buyers remorse.

It is important to be a rational optimist to ensure you maintain your credibility. Optimism should be based on understanding challenges as they actually are but focusing on those solutions which are most likely to produce a positive outcome. People will follow an optimistic person that can see the challenges people face but enlightens them to stronger paths.

Optimism helps people feel as though they can master challenges in work, family, or daily living. People love to feel as though they are strong enough to master their environment. When someone is optimistic they are able to attract others to them precisely because people want to feel more confident about their prospects. Positive feelings encourages people to come back again and again for many years.

People who are positive are also more approachable than those with negative dispositions. You may remember a time when you were attracted to a person who had a positive disposition. When someone is smiling and jolly others feel it is easy to approach that person. Their body language tells others "come talk to me I am a friendly and open person".  It doesn't take long before someone takes notice and make steps to meet you.

The impression a person leaves after leaving someone is just as important for attraction them as the initial contact. Positive and optimistic people leave a positive impression on people that influences how they remember the experience. Happy memories lead to word-of-mouth introductions through character references and future opportunities to connect to their social networks.

Birds of a feather flock together. Both optimism and pessimism are contagious. If people are negative about their lives and others around them it becomes likely that negativity will begin to influence their way of thinking. Surrounding yourself with positive people will attract additional positive people and protect you from negative thinking.

Optimism is a way of looking at the world and it has a euphoric effect on the people you meet. They are naturally attracted to people who help them feel good and enjoy the positive side of life. Creating positive impressions among people also helps you develop your personal and career networks in a way that leads to additional opportunities in the future. Use the power of positive optimism to expand your career influence and raise the quality of your life through the power of your mind is a skill learned over time.

You may be interested in a CNN article on how Optimism improves your cardiovascular health.

Monday, July 15, 2013

The Types of Leadership Power

Leadership and power work together to influence organizational affairs and individuals who work within these organizations. According to Goncalves (2013) future leaders will need to understand how to define their leadership style, use that leadership style in alignment with existing organizational contexts, be able to tell stories that create a vision, and tap into their imaginations to find solutions. This leadership is defined by the necessity of developing a stronger management platform for a more complex world.

The use of power can be legitimate or illegitimate. In general, legitimate power supports a governing system in the betterment of a wider group of people. Illegitimate power focuses more on self-serving ends outside of a proper governing system. Generally these are established through culture and governing laws. In the case of the workplace such power should be used to influence people to fulfill organizational objectives in ways that are fair and appropriate. When such power is overly coercive it can detract from the organizational mission and from the governing system itself.

There are seven forms of power that are used to create influence:

Legitimate Power: The power of a formal position.

Expert Power: Knowledge based power.

Coercive Power: The power of fear.

Reward Power: The ability to give or take away awards.

Referent Power: The power of knowing and referring to powerful people.

Information Power: It is the power that comes from the use of information.

Each of these power sources has the ability to influence some situations but can lack effectiveness in other situations. For example, reward power can encourage higher levels of performance but coercive power might be more effective in chaotic situations. Referent power may get you a job but expert power is more effective in performance. When and where to use each of these powers is dependent on the situation and context of the environment.

Understanding the different types of power used within organization and the preferred power of the leader helps to understand better methods of not only gaining power within organizations but also how to manage the organization itself. Relying too heavily on one type can limit the ability of the organization to create different types of pressures and rewards to ensure the highest amount of performance. Power is not necessarily a bad or good thing but is a natural part of living in a social world. Some are more egalitarian than others but ultimately each can be used appropriately to maintain forward momentum.

Goncalves, M. (2013). Leadership styles: the power to influence others. Journal of Business & Social Science, 4 (4).

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Book Review: Winning with People by John Maxwell

Winning with others is about understanding both ourselves and other people we live and work with. Before one can truly grasp the needs and desires of another person we must first understand our own needs and desires. It is through this self-reflection that we gain the ability to see other people for who they truly are. We cannot accurately see others until we understand what biases we hold about ourselves that impact our perceptions

The book Winning with People by John Maxwell sheds light on human relationships and how we come to understand and live with each other. On any particular day we associate, negotiate with, and deal with many other people who have their own interests in mind. Some of them are well developed and others are suffering from their own self-perception. 

Before we can understand our place in these social networks we must first understand that the entire population of the world, with the exception of ourselves, is composed of other people. It means that we are only one small piece of a larger pie. It is beneficial to take the perspective of the “other” before trying to force them to the submission of our will. Our way of thinking may not be the only way of thinking....or even the best way.

Conflicts within the workplace are common. They are bound to happen by the sheer fact that we are negotiating for wealth, influence and other resources. However, by caring for other people we have created stronger trusting relationships that supersede the conflict. It isn’t as though conflict is not necessary but that such conflict is done with conscious awareness of the perspective of the other person, their development, and the greater positive outcome. 

When we celebrate and engage with people we find them willing to celebrate and engage with us. There are those in life and at work that have a hard time connecting with anyone. This is due to their perceptual problem with themselves and not necessarily with the group. At other times, it may be the group and not the individual. Seek to look at and develop others and they will seek your development. We all go up or down together through shared experience. 

Of the wisdom that this book offers is a saying of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe:

Treat a man as he appears to be and you make him worse. But treat a man as if he already were what he potentially could be, and you make him what he should be. 

The quote is perfect for managers who desire to create higher levels of performance with workers. If a manager treats employees as though they are lazy, uncooperative, and self-interested they will become so. However, if you were to treat a worker s as though they have specific job knowledge, were contributors to organization, and capable of improved performance the worker will do so.  

The book is written at an undergraduate level and the author has put forward a number of important works on social relationships. Even though the book doesn’t state self-fulfilling prophecy it does elude to such a concept. It contains a strong message for students of business in the sense that we create what we see. What we see is based upon our perception of self. This self-perception creates our understanding of the world in which we live. 

Maxwell, C. (2005). Winning with People. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson.  ISBN: 978-0-7852-8874-9
Pages:  270
Cost: $12.00
Blog Ranking: 4.1/5