BLOG, Leadership / June 10, 2015

The Fifth Element Of Influence: You

By Janine Garner

the-fifth-element-memeThere are four key elements when it comes to life; water, earth, air and fire. But we often talk about a ‘fifth element’, that connecting point which makes the four others work together to create magic. We can apply the same idea of key elements to influence in business, with four areas that drive momentum. Then there is the fifth element - you.

We live in a highly connected digiworld; constant social media updates, 24/7 news availability and smart technology are all a part of the new normalcy. They have also created a platform for those who seek to become influential on a never before seen level. As a result, opportunities to build trust and influence, one to one and many to many, have become increasingly accessible.

Imagine adding into this Age of Information the following elements to driving influence, which, when working together, can create momentum for change, innovation and invention. Like a well-oiled machine, these elements working congruently can disrupt the status quo, explore new possibilities and drive momentum. They can assist you to become capable of more than you can be on your own; to operate outside of the safety zone of self-protection, and to move to a space of contribution and influence.

This is where new ideas and solutions are exchanged as part of a large community of WE thinkers with a high growth mindset. 

We can identify the key elements as:

  1. Congruence: Where is the starting point? It’s self-belief. You have to believe in yourself first and foremost. Your dream and vision for yourself and your business future is yours alone, and until you get this sorted, there is no moving forward. Are your skills, values and vision aligned? Are you engaged in your purpose, and truly passionate about what you are doing? Get congruent with this, get clear on your “Why” – and then, with hunger, commit to your purpose one hundred percent.
  2. Contribution: When there is a willingness to openly share knowledge and insight, and you are able to work at a level that is constant in terms of being risk tolerant and open to change, to new ideas and opportunity, then active contribution begins. Contribution comes from a place of unselfishness, and the ability to give rather than focus on taking. Give of your intellect, your experience, and your skills. The returns will be both surprising and rewarding, and you will drive influence at a level you may have only previously dreamed of.
  3. Connection: the more diverse your connections, the more threads that you spin from your own individual nexus – the more opportunities that can be leveraged. A diverse network of quality requires confidence in your expertise and value. It requires the courage to actively speak up, to debate and share.
  4. Collaboration: Actively engage, connect and share with others to drive mutual success. Collaboration creates momentum, drives new thinking, builds resilience and a determination to succeed. It enables individuals and businesses to explore possibilities, and develop the strategies needed to future-proof success.
  5. Character: This is the fifth element, the one that will drive all of the others. Above all else, it is what will make or break your ability to influence relationships

There’s an evolution going on. Make yourself, and your business, part of it. Be willing to instigate change, to give yourself and your team a common purpose – a say in what they are striving towards, an opportunity to do work worth doing and to influence more. Understand your character, the need to contribute, to connect, and to collaborate. Become someone who contributes.

Make all of these elements a part of your daily work life.

Because they are the way not just of the business future, but of the present.

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