Six Steps to Increase Your Influence

Influence is a powerful tool that can help individuals shape decisions, drive change, and achieve organizational goals. Whether you are a team member, a manager, or a leader, increasing your organizational influence can significantly impact your success and professional growth. The following are six practical steps to enhance your influence and make a positive difference in your organization:

  1. Develop and Believe in Your Expertise: Becoming an expert in your field is one of the most effective ways to increase your influence. But it is equally important to believe that your expertise is valuable and vital to the organization, team, and project. Continuously invest in learning and expanding your knowledge base. Stay current with industry trends, attend conferences and workshops, and seek out opportunities for professional development. By being knowledgeable and competent, you will gain the respect and trust of your colleagues, which will naturally increase your influence.
  2. Build Strong Relationships: Relationships are the foundation of influence. Take the time to build genuine connections with your colleagues, peers, and superiors. Actively listen, show empathy, and offer support whenever possible. Collaboration and teamwork can significantly amplify your influence within an organization. When you have built strong relationships, people are more likely to trust your judgment, seek your advice, and be open to your ideas.
  3. Cultivate Effective Communication Skills: Communication is vital for increasing organizational influence. Clearly and confidently articulate your ideas, thoughts, and opinions. Tailor your communication style to suit different audiences, colleagues, subordinates, or executives. Effective communication also involves active listening. Respond to what others say, demonstrate understanding, and provide thoughtful feedback. By communicating effectively, you can convey your ideas persuasively, gaining influence.
  4. Demonstrate Reliability and Accountability: Reliability and accountability are crucial for building trust and increasing your influence. Be consistent in meeting deadlines, honoring commitments, and delivering high-quality work. When you consistently demonstrate reliability, your colleagues will come to rely on you, and your opinions and recommendations will carry more weight. Taking responsibility for your actions and being accountable for mistakes demonstrates integrity, an essential skill for building trust and influence.
  5. Take the initiative and Show Leadership: Leadership is not confined to a title or position. Embrace opportunities to take the lead, even if they are outside your formal role. Proactively identify problems and offer solutions. Share your knowledge and insights with others, and be willing to mentor or guide those who seek your help. By taking the initiative and exhibiting leadership qualities, you position yourself as someone who can effect positive change, thereby increasing your influence within the organization.
  6. Be Adaptable and Flexible: In a rapidly changing work environment, adaptability and flexibility are key attributes that can boost your influence. Embrace new technologies, methodologies, and approaches. Be open to change and willing to step outside your comfort zone. By demonstrating adaptability, you position yourself as someone who can navigate uncertainty and guide others through challenging times, elevating your influence in the eyes of your colleagues and superiors.

Increasing your organizational influence requires combining skills, qualities, and strategies. By developing expertise, building solid relationships, cultivating effective communication skills, demonstrating reliability and accountability, showing leadership, and being adaptable, you can expand your influence and significantly impact your organization. Remember, influence is earned through consistent effort, integrity, and a genuine desire to contribute positively to the success of your team and organization.


Rich Jones is the Founder/Principal of Leading2Leadership LLC. Before starting his strategic planning agency, he spent over 20 years in leadership roles in the financial services sector. Before becoming an executive in the financial services sector, Rich was an entrepreneur, building and selling two businesses and working for early-stage start-up companies in executive roles in marketing, business development, and seeking investment partners. With more than three decades of experience, he brings innovative thought to companies and executives. Rich published “Leading2Leadership, a Situational Primer to Leadership Excellence.” The book is available on and was designed to be used as a book study for leadership development programs; it breaks leadership skills into manageable situations for discussion and reflection. Rich works with credit unions, CUSOs, and vendors, designing digital, data, culture, marketing, and branding transformation strategies. In 2014, Chosen as a Credit Union Rock Star by CU Magazine, and in 2018, Rich received the Lifetime Achievement Award from CUNA Marketing and Business Development Council. A Marine and graduate of Colorado State University, Jones shares his expertise at

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