Lessons from The Go-Giver Influencer
Part of my daily gratitude practice reminds me of the wonderful people in my life, who encourage and influence me to greater heights each year. One of the most extraordinarily positive and influential people is my friend Bob Burg.
Long before my book, The Book of Mistakes, was published this year, Bob not only read it and endorsed it, but was the very first to interview me about it for his popular Go-Giver podcast. After the recording of that podcast was turned off, Bob was still giving me praise for the book and a double-dose of encouragement. That’s the way he is.
In my life, he’s a person of genuine influence.
You may know him from one of his many books. If you’re super-fortunate, you may have seen him speak live. And, if you don’t know him, well, today is a great day for you!
When Bob sent me the early draft of The Go-Giver Influencer: A Little Story About A Most Persuasive Idea, a new installment in the Go-Giver series, I read it that evening. It tells a powerful story and left me with several pages of notes to ponder. And I was honored that he asked me for an endorsement.
Since that book is out this week, I reached out to Bob with some questions about his new book and his perspective on the topic of influence.
“The single greatest people skill is a highly developed and authentic interest in the other person.” -Bob Burg
Be a Person of Genuine Influence
In Bob Burg terms, what does it mean to be a person of genuine influence?
Skip, influence itself – on a very basic level – can be defined simply as the ability to move a person(s) to a desired action, usually within the context of a specific goal. That’s its definition but not its essence. The essence of influence is “pull.” This as opposed to “push” (i.e., how far can you push a rope?). People with genuine influence don’t have a lot of push with people but rather a lot of pull. That’s because influence is really an attraction.
Great influencers, genuine influencers, attract people first to themselves and only then to their ideas. And they do this through discovering what that other person wants, needs, desires, and values. And they ask themselves questions to ensure that that is their focus.
They don’t do this as a form of manipulation, in order to self-centeredly get people to do their will, but rather as a way to build and serve everyone in the process.
Genuine influence itself is really then the ability to attain the results you want when working with or dealing with others but in such a way that everyone comes away from the situation far better off than they were before—and just as importantly, that all parties feel good about the results, about each other, and about themselves.
“Your influence is determined by how abundantly you place other people’s interests first.” -Bob Burg & John David Mann
The story is one that starts with adversarial negotiations between two characters. Was this negotiation based on a real one?
While not based on one specific event, it was indeed based on the many, many similar scenarios that occur every day. The interesting thing in this case is that both characters had exactly what the other wanted and needed. So, it should have been a marriage made in heaven, right? Yet, it was anything but that. Instead, each conversation resulted in their being even further apart. And…neither one understood what the other person was thinking, never mind what would most likely result in their being agreeable to a solution. This leads into your next question.
“Retrain yourself to respond to conflict and disagreement by unruffling your feelings. Make calm your default setting.” -Bob Burg & John David Mann