The Art of Influential Leadership

Leadership is not simple and not something that only a few at the top have the privilege to engage in; any person at any level of an organization can assume such a role.  When you have decided to not wait to be told what to do, but do what needs to done; when you think outside the norm and influence others with your vision of how something should be done; when you engage in forward thinking and think possibilities and not barriers; you are engaging in leadership, specifically influential leadership. 

Leadership has been defined as the art and practice of achieving desired results through others. Influential leaders are defined as leaders that rely on influence as opposed to coercion.   These leaders create followers who want to follow as opposed to followers who believe they have to follow.   Here are some other characteristics of influential leadership.

  • Influential leaders demonstrate a certain passion that rallies, motivates, inspires, and influences people. 
  • Influential leaders have an enthusiasm that drives people to accomplish unbelievable things. 
  • Influential leaders produce an energy whereby individuals caught up in their influence take action, bond and connect with others, enroll and participate, and simply produce. 
  • Influential leaders value integrity by consistently being honest, forthright, and ethical by doing what they say and saying what they do.  They walk their talk.  Followers need to be able to trust the leader, and without trust, influence is impossible.
  • Influential leaders believe in humility by acknowledging that they do not know everything and are open to learn from others.
  • Influential leaders hold and highly value service.  They want to be of value to others, contribute to the benefit of others, from their employees, their organizations, their industry, their family, or their peers.
  • Influential leaders understand the art of listening and engaging in dialogue.   They understand the power of good communication.
  • Influential leaders practice reflection by taking the time to become fully aware of their own mental processes such as thoughts, feelings, and reactions to various situations.
  • Influential leaders recognize the skill of modeling and the importance of setting an example for others through their own behavior.
  • Influential leaders practice use of self as a barometer to assess what is going on inside themselves and around them in order to respond to their environment.  They have figured out what makes themselves tick.

Becoming an influential leader requires conviction, practice, patience and dedication.  Do you agree?  What type of leader do you have within?

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About Patricia Knight
Hello and welcome. My name is Patricia Knight. Thank you for taking the time to view my blog. I’m a Human Resources professional who is currently pursing an MBA at the University of Nevada-Reno. I am an analytical, detail-oriented professional who believes that collaboration and negotiation are critical for successful employee relations between leadership and employees.

8 Responses to The Art of Influential Leadership

  1. Nate Mercer says:

    I was just pulling together some information for a training course in influence in the workplace. This is one of the best, most concise pieces of information that I have come across! Thank you!

    • Nate, I am glad you find it useful. Thank you for taking your time to read and comment. As leaders, we need to be mindful of how influential we can be especially as we are seen as in a role of power. Please let me know how the training goes.

      Thank you,

  2. Raph. olusesan akinnawo says:

    This is beauiful.Personnaly this is a message for me and tommorrow I will be teaching some young church leaders. Thanks so much and wish to know more.I will be getting across from time to time.


    Raph sesan akinnawo

  3. This is a good description.

    I wonder how does this leadership style work under situation of crisis, where team members are yet to know each other, or have not worked in the same work ethos (say the army or same large business org). How should such a leader shift gears?

    • Thank you for reading this post. The ideas behind this leadership style is that you empower others and guide them without control. This type of leader steps in when needed and would defer to others expertise and judgement to get the job done. Kind of like the goal is to get to Z, and I will let you decide the best path to get there. During a crisis, even with new team members, the goal is set. The leadership style should not change but allow employees to do what they do best. For the military, the goal is to create a soldier with honor, respect, dignity etc. An influential leader can create these soldiers and would and often do take charge. However, each soldier has a role to play for the unit and the commanders will them perform their duties often without interference. This was a tough question to answer. 🙂


  4. jackie says:

    this is very nice description of the word influential leadership, my homework was to write what a influential leader you think it is

  5. Pingback: How To Lead Self-Directed People – Talk Data 2 Me

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