How is your impact rubbing off?

Published: Thursday, August 11, 2016

How do I rub off on others?  I had to really think about this question after listening to the EntreLeadership podcast featuring Dr. Jackie Freiberg on being a Person of Impact.

In the podcast, three ways were mentioned on how our impact rubs off on others, Positively, Negatively, or Inconsistently.  What is great about the definition of impact that Jackie gave, was that everyone has impact and we can choose how it lands with others.  Of course, we all want positive impact, but we also need to be realistic to know that we can exude negative and inconsistent results as well.  In transparency, I can tell you there is a lot of room for improvement for my impact.  Hopefully you can glean some insight from my reflections in each category:

Positive Impact

  • Smile at others.  I find myself doing this more as I walk down the halls each day.  I see demeanors change on the spot, a greeting occurs, and even chance conversations.
  • Recognize others for the work they are doing.  Give them credit where it is due and earned.  Do not be fake in your praise but be genuine.  This will improve the culture of where you are at.
  • Listen a lot more.  This shows respect.  It also give you an opportunity to digest new ideas and build upon them.

Negative Impact

  • Don’t be the devil’s advocate.  I have a tendency to figure out all the things that could go wrong with an idea when developing a solution.  Often times, this will stifle creativity for potential solutions.  Be a solution advocate and at a minimum, call out risks and couple that with a potential mitigation. You may have heard the boss say “Don’t come to me with a problem, unless you have a solution.” Others will attach to looking for problems rather than solutions.
  • Don’t be the first person out of the gate to deliver something each time.  You may think this is leading, but many times, people just copy the pattern.  New and innovative ideas are lost by others.
  • Don’t have a negative mental outlook for the day.  This is hard for me.  I always try to recall that God’s mercies are renewed every morning for me.  However, I often forget that I should show that same mercy and grace to others each day. Your negative attitude can’t be hidden physically, which then rubs off on the person next to you.

Inconsistent Impact

  • Don’t compromise on your core beliefs.  When this is inconsistent, people will wonder what direction are you truly trying to go and make them indecisive.
  • Don’t take shortcuts for convenience.  When you do this and expect your employees, co-workers or family to do it the right way, mixed messages will ensue.
  • “Do as I say, not as I do” never works.  We have all heard this saying.  Most of the times we do what people do, if what they say doesn’t matter.

On an ending note, I loved the quote in the podcast that went:

Say what you mean, mean what you say, and don’t say it mean.