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Try to remember the last time you made a decision, whether that decision was to buy a house or to rent; to outsource a component of your project or to create it in-house; or to have milk or cream in your coffee. What factors influenced you in this decision?
As social beings, we are constantly subject to the powers of influence. You can learn to recognize it as you become familiar with the tactics of influence. If you find that you have changed your mind, then you have been influenced. The ability to influence is powerful, and can be used for good or for “not-so-good.” To be an effective project manager, you need to become an expert influencer in order to manage your project teams and to commandeer the resources that you require to accomplish your project goals.
They key behind influencing is the ability to change others’ behaviors. Being an effective influencer is difficult because it is complex and hard to change the behavior of another person against their will – so don’t. Rather, change their behavior willingly. Kerry Patterson, author of the book “Influencer,” identifies six main factors that affect our behavior and how we can use influence to change these behaviors.
When you utilize all of these tactics to help create change in your project team, you are becoming an effective and efficient influencer.