3 Simple Ways for Women to Wield More Influence at Work
Men and women don’t look at office politics and power dynamics the same way.
Surveys have found that men tend to talk about “competition” when they describe office politics, using language like “the tools people use to win at work,” whereas women are more likely to cast it as “a natural part of influencing” and emphasize the ability to shape “ideas and agendas.”
What can cause such differences? Evidence points to gender biases resulting in women being judged more harshly than men when they are seen as “engaging in corporate politics.” So women don’t want to be viewed as political.
Like everything else, authentic influence takes practice: You train so you can transform. Here are three strategies to try:
1) Create relationship maps.
Step one is knowing which people to influence. Who has decision-making power in your organization? Who are the informal influencers? Who is most likely to resist your agenda because of competing objectives?
2) Build a ladder of Influence
To scale your influence add “agents” and “truth tellers" to your usual mentors and senior-level sponsors.
Agents are people in your organization or industry with whom you are close. They don’t require as much effort to cultivate as mentors and sponsors, but they require nurturing. Truth tellers are exactly what they sound like: the trusted allies who tell it like it is.
Start with a small, manageable number of diverse advocates and build it up over time.
3)Think bigger and own your vision
Don’t doubt your ability to wield influence. Aim higher, show up with confidence, be your constant true self.
In his early career, Josh was responsible for leading Innovation and Process Transformation within Philips, which involved the interception and integration of leading edge technologies in order to secure and sustain product and market leadership. Josh's work took him across Europe - developing and facilitating multi-nation, multi-function and multi-cultural teams, made up of outstandingly talented individuals.
In his subsequent career spanning over two decades, Josh has helped more than one hundred organizations - of all types and sizes, and from both the public and private sectors - secure significant successes in Key Areas of their operations,
Josh has been widely commended and highly respected as a Leadership Coach and Transformation Leader (available to view in his LinkedIn profile, and in evolveandprosper.co.uk).
Josh’s career has been characterised by continuous Learning, Sharing, Leading and Inspiring Change and Growth - involving employees and owner managers to the heads of multinational conglomerates. Over the past decade Josh has been spending an increasing percentage of his time ‘Giving back’ - mostly but not exclusively to unemployed and under-employed graduates, and senior executives within the voluntary sector
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