Everyone talks about it, but a few understands it. Most people want it, but few people achieve it. Sometimes people get it twisted when there is a call for duty, especially the selfless ones. What is this intriguing subject called Leadership? Why is being a leader easier for some and tough for others?
Most people define leadership as the ability to attain a position or the ability to give a dictate. But leadership is an all-encompassing concept that has as it’s core “influence”.
They go after a position, rank or title, and upon their enthronement, they think they have become a leader. It results in poor substitutes for germane leadership skills.
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The most introverted individual may influence ten thousand people in his or her lifetime. Meaning, we are leading in some areas while in some other areas, we are being led. Leadership is inherent, we are all leaders in some ways. Realizing our potential as a leader is a responsibility.
The most understandable way to figure out the power of influence is to think of how many times our lives have been shaped by others, such influence remains evergreen in our memories.
Robert Dilenschneilder shares the ideas of the “power triangle” to help leaders get ahead. He said: “The three components of this triangle are Communication, Recognition, and Influence. You start to communicate effectively. This leads to recognition and recognition, in turn, leads to influence”.
It is a process whereby information is enclosed in a package and is channeled and imparted by a sender to a receiver via some medium. The receiver then decodes the message and gives the sender a feedback. All forms of communication require a sender, a message, and an intended recipient. However, the receiver need not be present or aware of the sender’s intent to communicate at the time of communication in order for the act of communication to occur.
Communication requires that all parties have an area of communicative commonality. There are auditory means, such as speech, song, and tone of voice, and there are nonverbal means, such as body language, sign language, paralanguage, touch, eye contact, through media, i.e., pictures, graphics and sound, and writing.
An understanding of how communication works can help us to understand and improve our communication. The basic communication model consists of five elements: the sender, the receiver, the message, the channel, and feedback.
Dr. John Dewey, one of America’s most profound philosophers said that the deepest urge in human nature is “the desire to be important.” Remember that phrase: “the desire to be important.”
Robert Cialdini, Regents’ Professor of Psychology and Marketing, Arizona State University, has spent 30 years studying the ways people are influenced.
He identified six steps which include:
• SOCIAL PROOF
• COMMITMENT AND CONSISTENCY
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In conclusion, a leader, in the words of John Maxwell “knows the way”, “goes the way” and “shows the way”. Which means before you will lead you’ve got to “know”.
Being knowledgeable makes your ideas easy to communicate and this, in turn, leads you through the spectrum of stewardship and in the end, you show how it is being done. You lighten up the path for others to thread. When you’ve been able to do this, then you will be reckoned as an excellent leader.