Your Quiet Voice as a Leader
(Today’s guest post is courtesy of Paul Larsen. Paul is an executive coach whose latest book, Finding Your Voice as a Leader, will encourage you to build your leadership brand. Below is some of the wisdom Paul has used in writing his book.)
The leader who can influence successfully is a leader who never has to remind people who the leader is. Finding your voice as a leader requires the mature development and flexing of your INFLUENCE muscle. Once you’ve identified your Values and Outcomes, the third step to find your voice as a leader is to build relationships with Influence and credibility. How do you influence and align yourself and your community to maximize your opportunities and results? Recognizing and developing your communities of influence is key to being successful in finding and using your leadership voice.
Influence. Persuade. Coax. Convince. Sway. Motivate. Whatever you call it, the next step in finding your voice is to use your influence to get what you want or need. Your team. Your organization. Your communities. Your relationships. Yourself. Using your influence means building relationships with those around you and yourself. It’s about encouraging, motivating, and getting people to follow you. To be successful in influencing your outcomes is to be congruent with your beliefs.
You need to have the ability to believe in yourself, your values, your goals, and your outcomes, and to tell your compelling vision and story in a way that influences those around you. When you use influence successfully, you get people to trust and respect you—no matter what role you play. Influence is not about your title or role. Manager. Parent. Owner. VP. You don’t need a title to influence. As I mentioned earlier, finding your voice as a leader is not about TALKING LOUDER, YELLING, OR SHOUTING. That only makes you look weak, not persuasive. You don’t need a voice on STEROIDS to influence.
The Quiet Voice.
Much has been written lately about the “quiet leadership voice.” Influencing successfully within a global environment while increasing team engagement via the ever-changing landscape of our vibrant social technologies are just some of the opportunities leaders are challenged with when they find and use their unique leadership voice.
Many times, those who have the most influence are not the ones with the most power or authority. They have a tranquil voice which is used as an influential force, not only for their needs but for the needs of others. Being a successful influencer means that you put your attention on what you can influence versus what you can’t influence. In other words, you need to determine your “spheres of influence” so you can focus your values and outcomes on what you can change and what you can influence. Don’t waste your time and energy on outcomes and people you can’t change or influence.
Paul N. Larsen, MA, CPPC, is a Certified Professional Performance Coach and an experienced leadership consultant and speaker. He has over 30 years’ business experience with executive and senior-level responsibilities within small and large companies, including being the Chief Human Resources Officer for a $3 billion organization. Paul partners with industry-wide leaders and teams from Fortune 100, start-up, and high-tech environments to find their unique leadership “VOICE” and create compelling and purposeful outcomes for their organizations. He has a proven track record with organizations such as SAP, Electronic Arts Twitter, and Walmart. Read more about Paul and his latest book, Finding Your VOICE as a Leader at www.paulnlarsen.com.