How to Become an Influential Leader by Choice NOT by Chance | Karen Keller

As per SABA in their global leadership survey identified a major leadership gap. 1/3 of global companies struggle to find senior leaders and only 12% employees are inspired to come to office. Nearly, 46% companies said leadership skills are hardest to find in their employees and only 36% of employees listed leadership as their strength in the organization. 39% of companies offer leadership development program only 15% employees feel that these leadership programs are preparing them for future challenges. Less than 25% businesses worldwide are using advance technologies and just 23% are using big data and matrix visualization. We are not performing globally in our organizations and neither we fully meeting the need of leaders or identifying leaders.


It is the corner stone of all leadership success from top to bottom. Developing your influence brings great benefits to you personally and professionally. It also yield great benefits to people you are leading as it opens the doors for leaders to lead people. It is the very cornerstone that sustains long term goals and performance.

Difference between Influence and Being Influential:

In order to understand the distinction between two, we need to see few examples. When we talk about influence, we have religious influence in form of Dalai Lama, sports Roger Federer, Money Bill Gates, etc. And then there are people like Dale Carnegie, he wrote the book in 1936, on how to influence people where he wrote that when you want to influence people you need to understand what other person need and see things from their point of view and do something to impact the other person.

Being influential we can take the examples of Moses, Mother Teresa, Mahatma Gandhi, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, Albert Einstein, Nelson Mandela, etc. These people were influential. The connection between influence and being influential is that you have to be a certain way in order to do or have a major impact on a situation or other person. It takes who you are to determine the level of influence you have on others. In short, being influential is a higher order of having an influence.

Influence Being Influential
 External  Internal
 Title  Testimony
 Them  You
 Change  Shift
 State of Doing  State of Being

Litmus Test?

If I remove my money, power, position, etc will I still be influential? To still be you need to understand the needs of future generation:

  • Understand their past
  • Develop self-awareness
  • Sustain success
  • Gain Experience
  • Grow their confidence
  • Foster Trust

Seven Influence Traits

It is the first step in securing position of next generation leaders to perform better and influence people.

  • Confidence
  • Commitment
  • Courage
  • Passion
  • Empowering
  • Trustworthiness
  • Likeability

Every single person has all these traits, all which is needed is to identify them within you, polish them and help them bring a mind change within yourself.

Top Ten Leadership Issues:

  • Reputation Management
  • Moving fast enough
  • Connecting with followers
  • Managing growth
  • Leading former peers
  • Hiring right people
  • Guiding change
  • Inspiring others
  • Balance expectations
  • Asking for help

Two Ways the Leaders use the Seven Influence Traits

  • Help leaders to build their presence. People are strongly attracted to leaders who have strong influence and courage.
  • Help them grow more influential leaders.

Being influential shows up in every event, in your behavior, in your beliefs, etc in fact everywhere. The extent to which you maximize your seven traits will determine at what level of influence you will be in your organization.

“Remember if you are influential, you will always have influence.”


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