Word-Of-the-Week #802: Influence

December 19, 2019 by · Comments Off on Word-Of-the-Week #802: Influence 

Influence – having an effect on the character, development, or behavior of someone or something.

When was the last time you influenced someone? Are you generous in giving praise or encouragement instead of criticism? Do you believe that you are capable of making a difference?

This is the 2nd half of “How to Make a Difference to the World” by Mark Foo.

To recap: “Many people believe that they don’t have what it takes to make a difference to the world. They believe only people like Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Theresa, Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein, Bill Gates, and the likes, are capable of making a difference.

The truth is, every one of us is put in this world to contribute and make a difference to the world in our own unique way. It need not be anything out of the world. It just needs to be something you do with the intention of ‘doing good’.

  1. Empower Other People

“Abilities wither under criticism; they blossom under encouragement.” – Dale Carnegie

You can change the world by helping one person at a time. One of the ways to help someone is to empower the person. But how do you empower a person? Well, one of the ways is to be generous in giving praise and encouragement instead of criticism.

By praising and encouraging the person, you’d have helped him/her to accomplish what he/she is meant to be, and that would lead to more value being added to the world.

  1. Seek to Make a Long-Lasting Effect

“The greatest good you can do for another is not just to share your riches but to reveal to him his own.” – Benjamin Disraeli

This is Mr Disraeli’s version of ‘give a man a fish; you feed him for a day. Teach him how to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.’

The good that we seek to do will make more of a difference when there’s a long-lasting effect rather than a temporary effect. For example, if we make contributions to build a school, it will benefit many people for years to come.

And when more people receive education, they will in turn provide more value to the world.

  1. Stop Whining and Do Something

“If you have time to whine and complain about something then you have the time to do something about it.” – Anthony J. D’Angelo

All the whining and complaining in the world is not going to make a difference to the world. It will only drain you of your precious energy from doing things that do make a difference.

Instead of whining and complaining, seek to use the time more productively by engaging in activities that matter. When it comes to making a difference, nothing matters more than taking actions.

  1. Lead the Way

“A good example has twice the value of good advice.” – Author Unknown

Other than doing things to make a difference, we should also seek to influence others to start doing things that make a difference. And the best way to convince other people is to lead by example.

Start doing whatever is within your ability today. Start showing more concern and love to the people around you. Start to make monthly donations to your favorite charity. Start putting more effort in your work to increase the value output.

Every effort counts, no matter how small and insignificant it may seem. Just do something, and do something good.

This week’s focus is on influence. Do you lead by setting a good example? Are you engaging in activities with the intention of ‘doing good’? How would it make you feel to contribute to something that had a long-lasting effect?

I LOVE feedback! Join my Facebook community on my FUN-damentals Fan Page.


WOW Word-Of-the-Week #371: Influence

September 14, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

Influence – the power or sway used by others to get us to say yes.

Are you an easy target when asked to support a cause?  Do you have unwanted magazine subscriptions? Do you feel obligated to make donations, buy girl scout cookies, or help the school fundraisers, etc? Are you able to say no when called by a telemarketer? Do you have the ability to sway your customers, guests, clients or members to say yes when making a sale or recommendation?

Robert B. Cialdina, Ph.D. is the author of “INFLUENCE: The Psychology of Persuasion” and for the next seven WOW’s I am going to share ways that you can influence your customers, guests, clients or members to increase sales, as well as, how to not be swayed by someone trying to sell you something you may not want.

Dr. Cialdina writes, “Automatic stereotyped behavior is prevalent in much of human action, because in many cases it is the most efficient form of behaving, and in the other cases it is simply necessary. You and I exist in an extraordinarily complicated stimulus environment, easily the most rapidly moving and complex that has ever existed on this planet. To deal with it, we need shortcuts. We can’t be expected to recognize and analyze all the aspects in each person, event, and situation we encounter in even one day. We haven’t the time, energy, or capacity for it. Instead, we must very often use our stereotypes, our rules of thumb to classify things according to a few key features and then to respond mindlessly when one or another of these trigger features is present.”

“Civilization advances by extending the number of operations we can perform without thinking about them. Take, for example, the ‘advance’ offered to civilization by the discount coupon, which allows consumers to assume that they will receive a reduced purchase price by presenting the coupon. We expect coupons to do double duty. Not only do we expect them to save us money, we also expect them to save us the time and mental energy required to think about how to do it.”

“It is odd that despite their current widespread use and future importance, most of us know very little about our automatic behavior patterns. Perhaps that is so precisely because of the mechanistic, unthinking manner in which they occur. Whatever the reason, it is vital that we clearly recognize one of their properties: They make us terribly vulnerable to anyone who does know how they work.”

This week’s focus is on influence. Both how you are affected and swayed by others, as well as, how you sway your customers, guests, clients or members. When asked to support a cause you really don’t want to support how do you get out of it? Have you ever been caught off guard and agreed to something and later wishing you hadn’t? Have you ever bought something (mindlessly) and then realized afterwards it wasn’t really what you wanted?

Reader Responses

“My wife gives me a hard time because I am an easy mark for solicitors of most stripes. I will ALWAYS buy Girl Scout Cookies or those canisters of caramel corn from Cub Scout Troops, because I was once a Cub Scout. And there are times when young men, usually dropped off by a van in our neighborhood, will attempt to sell large bars of candy for $5 a piece for team uniforms. If I have the money, I will buy those. One thing I won’t do anymore is purchase magazine subscriptions. I did that once and was burned. When asked if I have money for a cause or fund I am suspect of, I will show the person my empty wallet. If they persist and ask for a check, I will tell them I have two young girls I am trying to support, and they are getting all of my money. I say that I am sorry, but I can’t this time. Now, whenever I see a person on the street with a plastic cup, I will put whatever change that I have in the cup or a few dollars, because I know that is probably all that person is going to have for food that day. Most of those people live from day to day in cities all across the country. As with any other business, there will always be charlatans in soliciting. Whenever I get a hard sell from one of them, my antennae go up and I just cut the conversation short. Many car salesmen are like that. However, I am polite. I do not slam doors or get into arguments. That does not pay. But those are a few of the ways that I deal with it. Thanks, Susan. Have a wonderful weekend.” – “Warrior” Joe