Embrace Your Power, Influence Will Follow


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Andrea Ames' lunchtime keynote at LavaCon 2013.

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  • I had the opportunity to attend LavaCon for the first time. After barely surviving the last five years of whithering economy and deflated opportunities, Andrea's keynote reinvigorated my opinion of my field and provided me with a much needed boost.
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Embrace Your Power, Influence Will Follow

  1. 1. Embrace Your Power, Embrace Your Power, Influence Will Follow Influence Will Follow Andrea L. Ames (@aames) IBM Senior Technical Staff Member and Content Experience Strategist/Architect/Designer LavaCon (@LavaCon) 21 October 2013 @aames @LavaCon
  2. 2. About Andrea   Technical communicator since 1983 Areas of expertise Information experience design: Content strategy, information architecture, and interaction design for content display and delivery, within products and interactive information delivery systems  Architecture, design, and development of embedded assistance (content within or near the product user interface)  Information and product usability, from analysis through validation  User-centered process for information development and information experience design      IBM Senior Technical Staff Member on corporate Total Information Experience team in IBM CIO’s office University of CA Extension certificate coordinator and instructor STC Fellow, past president (2004-05), former member of Board of Directors (1998-2006), and Intercom columnist (with Alyson Riley) of The Strategic IA ACM Distinguished Engineer 2 @aames @LavaCon
  3. 3. Today, we’re going to talk about… Power And influence Your “innate” power How your power influences—consciously or not Using your power and influence for good 3 @aames @LavaCon
  4. 4. Why?    If you can:  Design two UI panels  Write three pages  Create five icons  Drive 10 marketing campaigns  Track 45 project work items  Write 90 lines of code in a day, how many are accomplished when three people are driving, tracking, writing, designing, creating? 50? 500? 5,000? Are you expert at every aspect of technical communication, marketing, support, strategy, project management, your product, etc.? If so, do you have the bandwidth to be a one-person show? Most complex situations require multiple judgments, skills, and experiences And most importantly… Have you ever had a great, innovative idea—like the need for a unified content strategy??—and wanted it implemented in your organization? 4 @aames @LavaCon
  5. 5. Technical skills and knowledge vs. soft skills Easier to see and develop Harder to see and develop Skill Knowledge Necessary but not sufficient Soft skills, including leadership, personal and power management, influence Characteristics for greater success 5 @aames @LavaCon
  6. 6. POWER @aames @LavaCon
  7. 7. Are you feeling powerful? Please, quickly audit your body. 7 @aames @LavaCon
  8. 8. Who is feeling powerful? Helpless Depressed Powerless Submissive Happy Warrior Elated Enthusiastic Energized Leader 8 @aames @LavaCon
  9. 9. Who is feeling powerful?      Helpless Depressed Powerless Submissive      Happy Warrior Elated Enthusiastic Energized Leader 9 @aames @LavaCon
  10. 10. 10 @aames @LavaCon
  11. 11. What makes us appear—and feel!—powerless?  In our body language      Slumped shoulders Crossed arms or legs Lack of eye contact Touching hair or face In our speech     Hesitation: “Uh” or “um” Hedges: “Sort of,” “kind of,” or “I guess so” Tag questions: “This is …, don’t you think?” Disclaimers: “I don’t know everything about this topic, but …” 11 @aames @LavaCon
  12. 12. When it’s useful: Disclaimers IF USED CAREFULLY…  When you are perceived to be in a position of power, to be non-threatening and get those in less powerful positions to speak up and contribute  When actually, or being perceived to, directly challenge those in power 12 @aames @LavaCon
  13. 13. What makes us appear—and feel!—powerful?  In our body language  Stand or sit with good posture  Spread out; take up space  Make appropriate eye contact (within cultural norms)  In our speech  Use strong words; avoid hesitation words  Utilize voice inflection  Speak loudly and clearly and with a powerful tone  Understand your audience 13 @aames @LavaCon
  14. 14. We can learn a lot from animals, because power is primal. http://www.seaworld.org/animal-info/info-books/gorilla/behavior.htm Own the space. Cesar Millan, Cesar’s Rules http://books.google.com/books/about/Cesar_s_Rules.html?id=vpm6mpBvRGwC @cesarmillan 14 @aames @LavaCon
  15. 15. Amy Cuddy’s life hack @amyjcuddy 1. 2. Stand up Raise your arms above your head in a victory stance Practice for two minutes prior to social or stressful situations Amy Cuddy: “Your body language shapes who you are” TED talk http://www.ted.com/talks/amy_cuddy_your_body_language_shapes_who_you_are.html 15 @aames @LavaCon
  16. 16. Our bodies can change our minds! It’s not about being insincere! This is our “innate” power! Fake it until you become it! Amy Cuddy: “Your body language shapes who you are” TED talk http://www.ted.com/talks/amy_cuddy_your_body_language_shapes_who_you_are.html 16 @aames @LavaCon
  17. 17. INFLUENCE @aames @LavaCon
  18. 18. From Wikipedia, influence is… When the actions or thoughts of individuals are changed by another individual    Amount of influence you exert often determined by your confidence/self-esteem and perceived persona Ability to influence also affected by your perceived expertise, or credibility—others’ trust of you and your knowledge or skill Sometimes seen as persuasion, guiding people toward the adoption of an idea, attitude, or action by rational and symbolic (though not always logical) means 18 @aames @LavaCon
  19. 19. Black magic?  Is it…  Charisma?  Good looks?  Money?  A talent that you’re born with?  It can’t be learned, developed, refined, improved, right? 19 @aames @LavaCon
  20. 20. How I like to think of it    It’s something you acquire via your actions and attitude Managing yourself and your attitude Leadership—the ability to (from Tom Peters)      Inspire Liberate Achieve Gaining respect and trust Leading in every direction     Setting and communicating a clear vision with enthusiasm Inspiring enthusiasm in others Getting things done through others that you could not achieve alone It’s not black magic 20 @aames @LavaCon
  21. 21. What some experts say John Maxwell  James Kouzes and Barry Posner  Joel Garfinkle  21 @aames @LavaCon
  22. 22. Five levels of leadership John Maxwell (@johncmaxwell), Developing the Leader within You 22 @aames @LavaCon
  23. 23. Five ways to be Influential Joel Garfinkle (@workcoach4you), Getting Ahead: Three Steps to Take Your Career to the Next Level 23 @aames @LavaCon
  24. 24. Five practices of exemplary leadership James Kouzes (@Jim_Kouzes) and Barry Posner, The Leadership Challenge  Model the way Go first, set the example  Inspire a shared vision Enlist others in the vision, know constituents and speak their language  Challenge the process Innovate, grow, improve, experiment, take risks  Enable others to act Foster collaboration and build trust  Encourage the heart Recognize contributions, celebrate values and victories 24 @aames @LavaCon
  25. 25. Five key themes Credibility  Trust  Exemplar  Enable others  Inspire others  Self Relationships 25 @aames @LavaCon
  26. 26. Shoring up your power and influence Skills and knowledge (necessary, but not sufficient)  Professionalism (“soft skills”)   Goleman’s emotional intelligence  Covey’s seven habits  Maxwell’s approach to attitude and 360-degree leadership References at the end of this presentation 26 @aames @LavaCon
  28. 28. Why we use our power Jay Hall and James Hawker, Power Management Inventory       Personalized: achievement of personal gain Socialized: need to influence others’ behavior for the common good Affiliative: need to be liked by others Effective use of power within the org is necessary Strong power motivation is essential to good leaders (managers) Socialized power leads to more successful leadership (management) than personalized power 28 @aames @LavaCon
  29. 29. Once you embrace your power…  How do you use your influence?  Only for good, not evil.  29 @aames @LavaCon
  30. 30. Influence model: Reciprocity Allan Cohen and David Bradford, Influence without Authority  Think in terms of currencies  Inspiration-related  Task-related  Position- related  Personal 30 @aames @LavaCon
  31. 31. Contextual forces shape behavior Allan Cohen and David Bradford, Influence without Authority 31 @aames @LavaCon
  32. 32. Questions? 32 @aames @LavaCon
  33. 33. Resources used/cited     Allan Cohen and DavidBradford, Influence without Authority Stephen Covey, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People Amy Cuddy: “Your body language shapes who you are” TED talk: http://www.ted.com/talks/amy_cud dy_your_body_language_shapes_ who_you_are.html Joel Garfinkle, Getting Ahead: Three Steps to Take Your Career to the Next Level        Daniel Goleman, Emotional Intelligence Jay Hall and James Hawker, Power Management Inventory James Kouzes and Barry Posner, The Leadership Challenge John Maxwell, Developing the Leader within You John Maxwell, The 360-Degree Leader John Maxwell, Attitude 101 Cesar Millan, Cesar’s Rules 33 @aames @LavaCon
  34. 34. Related resources   David Allen, Getting Things Done (GTD) Amy Cuddy, Act Powerful, Be Powerful: http://www.cnn.com/2012/10/28/op inion/cuddy-power-posing/   Joseph Grenny, Kerry Patterson, David Maxfield, Ron McMillan, and Al Switzler, Influencer: The New Science of Leading Change Phil Harkins, Powerful Conversations: How High Impact Leaders Communicate 34 @aames @LavaCon