As I was taking an online course on achieving personal and professional success at Warton online, I completed an assessment of my current influence behaviours. Based on this assessment, below is my action plan for improving my influence.

One influence tactic I would like to use more effectively is Pathos, which is the emotion of the audience, according to Aristotle’s Rhetoric three means of persuasion. I can convey messages with emotional resonance. A leader’s job is not as a rational argument, but as an emotional framing job. If I can get other people to reveal their problems, pain and unmet objectives, I can get people to take action by selling them a vision of their problem as the perfect solution. Know the emotional drivers and I can frame the benefits of any actions in language that will resonate.

I have not been using this already because I focus too much on logos, which is the logic of the idea, according to Aristotle’s Rhetoric three means of persuasion. My education is mostly on training skills like analytics, instead of creating passion in others and leading them in that way. It is not the most effective way to persuade others using logical reasoning, expertise and data. Usually, my goal is to find and uses concrete examples to present my case, instead of telling a story that moves an audience emotionally. The barrier has been the way that it’s not easy to make the audience experience the same emotion that I experienced at the moment about to be described in a story.

One concrete step I can take soon that will show improvement in this area is to use stories to help make my points and find ways of communicating that arouse emotion. Successful people rarely become better leaders because they know more. They become better leaders because they follow through, which requires a willingness to feel the feelings that come when we take risks and break old patterns. That courage is essential in finding interesting ways to present information or ideas, and thinking about how to say things, not just what to say. I don’t learn it by listening to lectures. The best way is to practice in my next presentation and tailors communication content and style to the specific audience to influence their emotions.