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  • How to Influence Others Regardless of your Position or Job Title - Part One Leading Up – 10 Ways to...
How to Influence Others Regardless of your Position or Job Title - Part One Leading Up – 10 Ways to Support your Leadership

Leadership isn't about position. Leadership is about using your influence exactly where you are. For teams to develop at every level, they need leaders at every level. ~John Maxwell.

All teams at all levels of any organization need an All-Around Leader. These are the type of leaders who lead up-to the top levels of the organization.  They lead across the organization among their peers.  And they lead down directly to their team members as well as others outside of their influence in the organization.

A versatile leader leads through influence, not through the position they hold, nor through any power they may or may not have. Some people believe that a person can't lead unless that person is at the "top" of the totem pole...they fail to recognize that true leaders lead even if they are at the bottom. We can all choose to better our organization and help fulfill a better vision by serving as an All-Around Leader.

There are a lot of team members who silently wonder if they can help their supervisor or manager.  On a rare occasion they may ask how they can help.  Here are ten ways you can support your leadership, add value to your organization and distinguish yourself from the rest of the team by doing your part with excellence.

1. Direct yourself by learning self-management. 

Self-management, therefore, is all about becoming your own leader by training your mental, physical, social and intellectual faculties in different ways.  ~Dr Prem Jagyasi

In order to be successful, we must make the right decisions early and manage those decisions every day.  Then we need to follow through on them with consistency.  This way your supervisor does not feel that they have to micromanage you; they know that you will get it done and if there is a bump on the way you will let them know in plenty of time to get it corrected.  If you say you are going to do something then do not procrastinate.  Keep your word and do as you said.  All the members of the team are depending on you fulfilling the obligation you agreed to do.

2. Lighten your executive’s load. 

We all have burdens and we need to learn to carry each other's burdens, lighten each other's load. ~ Ann Romney

When the leader succeeds, the organization succeeds. Conversely, it is almost impossible for the team members to win if your leader fails.  Be a team player and lift the load on your managers’ plate. By helping the executive in any way, you are a part of something bigger and will have the chance to celebrate success in the end.  Stop bickering and don’t be a negative nelly.  No one wants to be around those that constantly complain or think they have a better way; and this does not help the leadership.

3. Be willing to do what others won’t. 

I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do. ~ Leonardo da Vinci

Few things gain the appreciation of a manager more quickly than a team member with a whatever-it-takes attitude.   Your leader will recognize your enthusiasm and desire to serve the organization with excellence. Be positive. Be easy going….go with the flow.  Help where you can.

4.  Do more than manage a project- LEAD! 

Managers work with processes – leaders work with people. ~ John Maxwell

Androids don’t do the work in the organization, leaders do.  Think within a broad context about how your decisions will impact the entire organization. What you do matters.   Understand that the leadership is looking at what is best and safest for the entire group; not the loudest or most vocal.  Learn the Art of Getting Along.

5. Invest in the relationships.

You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you. ~ Dale Carnegie

We must connect with those we lead, other associates, and those who lead us. In order to help the managers, be a champion of your executive’s goals for the business.  If the goal of the team is to improve customer relations then help in every way you can to accomplish that goal. Be a great cheerleader for you leaders; they need the encouragement. 

6. Be prepared.

By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail. ~ ― Benjamin Franklin

Take steps and do the research to prepare yourself and your executive for your time together. Main goals should be to ask the right questions and to bring something to the table. Preparation paves the way for all associates to add value to each other.  Let the leadership know you are attending the meeting.  Come with the agenda that was sent to you so you are informed.  Be on time. Have what you need to participate fully in the meeting. The leaderships take the time to organize the meeting; be considerate and come prepared.

7. Know when to push and when to back off. 

Pull the string and it will follow wherever you wish. Push it, and it will go nowhere at all. ~ Dwight D. Eisenhower

Knowing how to read the atmosphere will help you to determine appropriate next steps in any given situation.  Complaining with no solution, is not helpful, and demotivates the team from continuing their roles.  If all they hear is bickering and complaining leaders will not likely to be eager to associate with you or encourage management to promote you. 

8. Become a go-to person. 

Let’s all focus on the people who are helping, and be one of them. ~ Peta Kelly

All executives are looking for associates who can step up and make a difference when it matters. When they find such people, they come to rely on them and are inevitably influenced by them. To be a go-to person, we must always produce excellence. Leaders will trust us and count on us in moments that are important. Be this great supporter for your leadership.

9. Be better tomorrow than you are today. 

Learning and innovation go hand in hand. The arrogance of success is to think that what you did yesterday will be sufficient for tomorrow. ~ William Pollard

The key to personal development is the desire and willingness to grow.  Goals are valuable, but growth helps you achieve those goals. Focus on growth every day, and your life will be fulfilling.  Help grow the organization; help the leadership to achieve their goal; be positive.  Here are ways that you can grow.

10. Be a part of the solution not the problem.

A person who sees a problem is a human being; a person who finds a solution is visionary; and the person who goes out and does something about it is an entrepreneur. ~ Naveen Jain

Complaining does nothing but bring everyone down, especially the leadership.  If you don’t like the way something is being done then volunteer to do it the next time instead of complaining about it.  Constructive criticism means giving a solution to what you think may be a problem.  Understand that the leadership must represent the organization and is responsible for many things that you may not comprehend and therefore may not understand the reasons for the decisions of the leadership.

Leadership is the ability to guide others without force into a direction or decision that leaves them still feeling empowered and accomplished. ~ Lisa Cash Hanson

Leading upward is about you helping your management team to obtain the organizational goals.  It is about using your influence, your expertise and being prepared at all times to be part of the solution.  All ten of these ways for you to support your leadership are easy to do and ultimately will benefit your growth, your executive, as well as the company as a whole. 

Check back next week to see Part 2 about Leading Across to Your Peers in this series on how you can have a How to Influence Others Regardless of your Position or Job Title.


If you would like a more in-depth help developing some techniques to become a more comprehensive leader please contact me, or sign up for my newsletter, I would be happy to help you lead up, lead across and lead down.

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