Allies, Trust, and Influence

  • Jeff Gibbard
  • 2 min read

Not everyone is going to like you.

Not everyone is going to recognize your value, regardless of how much you do, or how visible or invisible that work is.

As a leader you will be met with resistance from time to time. No matter how lovable you are. No matter what a great communicator you are. Despite everything and anything you’ll be met with resistance. There are many variations of this theme.

  • To be led by another, is a sacrifice of your ego. Not all take this well.
  • If you come in as an outsider, you will be a lot like a stepmother, or stepfather. It is natural for you to face resistance.
  • In some cases your personality may not mesh with certain members of your team.

In each of these cases, the most effective strategy is to make an ally who already has the ear of the person who is resisting you. It is imperative in these moments that you do not take it personally, and that you do not try and climb this mountain alone. If you have no trust in the bank from which to make it withdrawal, it is essential to leverage the social capital of others.

A neutral or warm third-party can help you make progress. An endorsement from a third-party can be a powerful thing. You’re able to leverage the trust and social capital they’ve gained.

This person has Social capital. This is someone with whom the resister already has social equity, where you may have none.

This can be true when dealing with your team members or with clients. Make allies and leverage their power to create the conditions for a successful relationship.

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