2 Powerful Ways To Persuade And Lead Others With Confidence

Do you wish you had more influence over people in the workplace? Do you often wonder what it would take to develop powerful confidence and persuade others in any environment?

Today, we’re going to discuss two effective yet subtle tools that can provide you with a tremendous amount of influence at work and anywhere else in your life. This episode is all about bringing confidence into the workplace—something that’s possible regardless of your position or rank.

Many people believe that leadership qualities can only exist in and be displayed by those in leadership positions, but the truth is that leadership skills don’t grow from being made a leader. As we all know, there are plenty of people in leadership positions who have no business being called “boss,” while there are others who seem to run the show from behind the scenes—they are looked up to by their peers, they are consistently asked for advice, and they share their opinions and make decisions wisely.

To display leadership qualities, you need only show up and be willing to share your many strengths.

Whether speaking to a colleague, pitching ideas to the boss, or offering your thoughts in a meeting, you need to show that you can communicate confidently and guide the ideas of a team. If major confidence issues are holding you back in this regard, however, you’ll never be able to persuade people, let alone get noticed, grow your business, or receive a promotion.

One way to effectively release your inner confidence is through personal or group coaching with me in mastermind seminars, such as Confidence Unleashed. Through this work, you’ll be guided in growing your confidence, becoming a better self-ally, and developing powerful social skills that will allow you to succeed in any setting.

Regardless of how you choose to get a handle on your social confidence, it is something you’ll have to tackle if you hope to get ahead in your career.

Assuming you’ve started to master your ability to approach social situations with confidence, our purpose today is figuring out how to wield greater influence in your daily interactions. To this end, there are two simple tricks based around the following aspects of communication:

  • How you approach the person to whom you’re going to speak;
  • How you frame what you’re going to say.

Let’s say you have an issue at work: there’s a big project coming up that involves many different departments, but no one seems to have a concrete plan for moving forward. What is the best move for you to make as someone who has a vision for the big picture?

To start with, let’s discuss how are you going to approach the situation. Addressing the issue in group meetings hasn’t been going well so far, so you think the best idea would be to approach the boss . . . congratulations—you’ve made the right choice. The main issue you have to contend with now is that you probably have at least a small amount of frustration and apprehension built up regarding the project.

Your best bet is to let all of this go before you speak with the boss.

Leaders keep cool in tough situations, so if you want to become a person who has pull with others, you’ll need to start showing that you aren’t fazed by problems in the workplace. You don’t burst into the boss’s office exclaiming, “This is a complete mess, and I can’t see why it’s not bothering anyone else!” Instead you set up a time to speak with the boss, enter his or her office with confidence, and calmly bring up the fact that you have a few concerns.

This brings us to the second point: framing what you’re going to say.

At some point in your life, you’ve probably given a picture of yourself or your family to someone as a gift. Did you just hand them the flimsy photograph, or did you frame it first? My guess is that you probably encased it for both safety and presentation the same way that art galleries frame priceless paintings. Whether you’re dealing with a pharmacy print-out or a two-million-dollar Picaso, it behooves you to put forth a little effort to put it in its best light.

The same rule applies for conversation—sure, you can just blurt your thoughts out willy-nilly, but why not take a second to think it through?

To start with, “concerns” is a great word, and you should remember it for future conversations similar to the ones we’re discussing: “I have a couple concerns,” said casually and calmly not only sounds like you’ve taken time to consider what you’re saying, but it also lets the boss know something’s wrong without sounding overwhelmed.

At that point, you need only remember that you are trying to invoke the attitude of a leader—a team player. A team is seldom led completely astray by one person, and even when it is, it does you no good to point that out as someone who is trying to lead the team forward.

Let’s say your first instinct is to say something like, “John Smith hasn’t figured out his role in the group, and his efforts are taking us in the wrong direction; I have an idea that will put us back on track, and I’d like to take over his duties so that I can get that accomplished.”

This is one way to go about addressing the issue (it’s certainly more assertive than doing nothing at all), but it’s probably not the most effective way to influence anyone’s opinions or show that you are interested in the success of the whole team. When you approach the situation with a “my way, or the highway” attitude, you run the risk of being seen as a maverick—someone who may be able to fix his own problems, but who has no effect whatsoever on the people with whom he’s working.

So, how can we frame this concern more effectively?

For starters, there’s no need to bring up John Smith at all. What we’re doing is raising a concern and offering a solution. Throwing a co-worker under the bus never has to come into play in order to make that happen. Here’s how I’d frame the conversation:

“Hey, boss. Is this a good time? I have some concerns after our last group meeting. It seems to me that the project is disorganized—I can’t see how all the pieces fit together, and I don’t think anyone else can either. I think it is incredibly important that we figure it out as a team. I’ve been thinking about a solution, and if you’d like, I could map out an alternative strategy that I think would put us in the right direction and then share it with you before moving forward with the other departments.”

I’m sure you can see how this is very different than saying, “I don’t like John’s way; I’m going to do it my way.”

There’s nothing wrong with raising issues at work—in fact, it can make you look like a hero! You do, however, need to stay conscious of approaching issues with clarity and confidence, and you need to offer solutions in a team-oriented manner that shows you’re ready to lead your co-workers. Then and only then will you become a person who is able to influence others effectively.

As always, please feel free to “like,” share, or subscribe by using the available links. You can also share your comments below: What’s the most valuable thing that you took away from this episode? How do you plan to apply it in your job or your life?

The more we stay connected to each other and share our experiences, the more we will learn. In the meantime, may you have the courage to be who you are and to know on a deep level that you’re awesome. Talk to you soon.

Dr. Aziz