Influence, by definition, isn’t always good by default. We can be negatively influenced by someone as easily as we can be positively influenced. Bottom line, they have an effect.
Business leaders, both strong and weak, yield powerful influence and drive measurable results. Strong leaders create a culture of high performance and productivity, which leads to healthy profit. Weak leaders create a culture of complacency and mediocrity, which leads to unhealthy fear and turnover.
No doubt, weak leadership is the greatest gift we give to competitors. It is an aversion for employees. It has a ripple effect that reaches and repels consumers.
Out of the nine predominant leadership styles, my top pick for you to practice is servant-style. The servant leader focuses on empowering employees, deputizing others to take ownership, and encouraging innovation.
This is the corporate environment in which I personally flourished best. It is what I practice today – even as a solopreneur. Servant-style leadership yields positive influence and maximum returns.
My Leader-Meter highlights five mindsets that measure your influence and determine your success or failure at servant-style leadership:
Do you favor POSITIONAL POWER or PERSONAL POWER?
People yield greater influence personally. Positional power is fleeting. Personal power can be life-long! A fancy TITLE is given and not guaranteed. Personal influence is earned and can be a foundational part of a personality – especially when it is authentic. Don’t fall into the trap of borrowed power!
Are you MASTER or SERVANT?
Being in the master position does not guarantee a person will be a positive or negative influencer. Masters are not automatically stronger leaders, even though they perceive themselves as being higher up. When we are talked down to by a leader, they are hard to look up to! Strong leaders don’t position themselves as the supreme ruler.
Do you act SELFISH or SELFLESS?
Servant Leaders nourish to flourish. They sincerely desire others to succeed – making head and heart choices that break the ice of the impersonal, uncaring corporate culture. Servant Leaders check their EGO at the door! They know it is best to give, in order to get.
“When ego and pride become the driving force in your leadership decisions, they render you ineffective.” – Ken Blanchard
Are you COMPLACENT or a CATALYST?
Servant Leaders offer solutions over complaints. They choose not to be a part of the problem, but to generate ideas that remedy. To be a catalyst, remember to bring your brains to work!
Do people FEAR YOU or TRUST YOU?
Authentic Servant Leadership is built on trust. Since we can’t convince others to trust us, we demonstrate it through our actions. Leaders who rely on fear to drive performance believe that intimidation is the secret to strong leadership. Servant Leaders favor affirmation over intimidation and have more success inspiring performance.
Who are you IN IT to WIN IT for?
A team win is of greater value to the organization than a personal win. If Servant Leaders chased recognition, fame, power or money; they are not practicing the servant-style. Greed is a leader’s biggest nemesis.
Where are you on my Leader–Meter? Choose to be a positive influencer. Being authentically interested in helping others be their best at work, home, and in the community is servant-style at its best!
Stuart Cohen, Chief Motivation Officer at StuartLloydCohen.com
If you can think big, Stuart will help you do big! An accomplished 28-year travel industry executive turned serial solopreneur, Stuart is a creator of brands and an energizing motivational speaker. He motivates & maximizes personal performance in leadership, entrepreneurship, salesmanship & wellness.