The Law of Influence

The second law of the The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership is The Law of Influence:

“The True Measure of Leadership is Influence – Nothing More, Nothing Less”

If you don’t have influence, you will never be able to lead others. True leadership cannot be appointed or assigned. Titles are often meaningless in this sense. Leadership must be earned. The only thing a title can buy is a little time — either to increase your level of influence with others or to undermine it.

To change organisations you need influence. Leadership is not based upon holding position, leadership is about your ability to influence people.

It is not about you, it is about them. If you focus on adding value to others, and adding value to your organization with no expectations of reciprocity, then you will shorten the time required to gain influence. People need to know you care before they are interested in what you know.

To gain influence, you must optimize the following factors:

  • Character — who you are
  • Relationships — who you know
  • Knowledge —what you know
  • Intuition — what you feel
  • Experience — where you’ve been
  • Past success — what you’ve done
  • Ability — what you can do

He who thinks he leads, but has no followers, is only taking a walk. If you can’t influence others, they won’t follow you. And if they won’t follow, you’re not a leader. That’s the Law of Influence. No matter what anybody else tells you, remember that leadership is influence—nothing more, nothing less.

Summing-up: Leadership comes from influence, and that cannot be mandated. It must be earned.

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