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Women Entrepreneurs 101: Rules of Leadership: 10 ways to be influential as a woman

Being influential means that your position in an organization does not make you the leader of your organization. You "the leader" must make the position influential. You may not end up being influential if you have the right credentials, the right education or even the right experience. To be a successful entrepreneur you need to gain the influence in your organization and earn the right to become a leader.
Leadership is influence.
As women, we are already in a great place to start. We are mostly communicative, emotionally intelligent and compassionate. So where do we begin training for influence.
1. Start with making friends.
Making friends is the fundamental of increasing influence. You may never be successful in being of influence if you have not been able to gain the trust of people as friends.
Friendships are made. Never won.
2. Show genuine interest in other people and their lives
People can decipher a genuine concern from a fake one. If you are not the kind of a person who feels interested in other people’s lives and stories, it will be difficult for you to connect with them at a deeper, emotional level and you will not have an impact with your thoughts on them.
3. Help someone
Always lend a helping hand. Open up your network to other people to assume a helping role in the challenges of their lives.
4. Be honest and sincere
If it’s not from the heart, it will not have an impact. Be honest and sincere in your relationships. Give from the heart.
5. Communicate
As women, you are good at articulation of your thoughts already. Morph this into your biggest asset. Communication is not only about how you can influence other people to listen to you but also how you inspire them into the world of your values. For women, communication is perhaps our biggest asset for achieving daily leadership.
6. Set goals and achieve them
People respect focus. Set goals and achieve them. Do not promise something you cannot deliver and if you do fail to, apologize and keep trying. Credibility for women is even more important. In a world which is negatively biased towards our professional acumen, it is even more pertinent that you work towards achieving your goals and create a culture of perseverance for yourself and your team.
7. Listen
Listen more than talk. Always be present. When you listen, it opens up inroads into the psyche of the person talking to you . Understand where people are coming from, their motivation and what the most important driver for their lives is. This will help you communicate with them better and influence their careers and team goals more objectively.
8. Be Accessible
Be available for your teams. Be available for your network. However successful you are, your influence is about people who are influenced by you and not your personality in isolation.
9. Network
Meet and know people. Contribute. Be a part of like-minded formal groups. Create change.
10. Mentor
Mentorship is a two way process. You learn from your mentees and your mentees educate and embrace your experience. Mentor your team. Tell them about your experiences. Have them ask you questions and guide their beliefs. Help evolve their lives by finding time to guide their career paths and learning process.
If as a leader you do not possess leverage or influence, you will end up being ineffective.For that you will require that you have a buy in from your teams and therefore create a situation where people don’t agree with you just because their paychecks depend upon you. They must be participatory because you can influence them in that manner. And they believe in you.

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