Harvard Business Review has confirmed that the 2 golden nuggets of influence and leadership are projecting warmth and informal networking. These are the key to having influence. Leaders who try immediately to project strength, run the risk of instilling a counterproductive fear in the very people they want to inspire. Without a foundation of trust, a company’s employees may comply outwardly with their leader’s wishes, but they’re much less likely to comply privately – to adopt the values, culture, and mission of the organisation in a sincere, lasting way.
And how can someone influence change within an organisation? What matters most, according to Julie Battilian of HBS and Tiziana Casciaro who wrote ‘Network Secrets of Great Change Agents’ is how well a person understands and mobilizes the informal networks needed to effect change. People will help, if they owe you for something you did in the past to advance their goals.”
Unless you really enjoyed the job and working closely with all kinds of people, would you be able to do both of these? Sincerely project warmth and get on with lots of different sorts of people? Probably not. Great leaders love their companies and really enjoy being great leaders.