Think of a specific situation where you are struggling to influence a resistant colleague, boss or spouse. You’ve used reason, facts, appealed to their emotions and still can’t convince them. Frustrating, right? Successful women physicians use these key phrases to gain more influence.

Dale Carnegie may have said it best when he said, “There is only one way…to get anybody to do anything. And that is by making the person want to do it.”

Here are some simple tips my physician clients find helpful to gain more influence, and get people to want to do things for you:

Put Others First to Gain More Influence

It’s difficult to persuade others to help us with a ‘me first’ approach. “I’ll be a more attentive spouse when he/she is more attentive towards me,” or “I’ll work harder when my boss recognizes my contribution.” What do they need, expect or lack? When people feel seen and heard they’re much more likely to help you achieve what you want.

Distinguish Between the Need vs. Want of the Other Party

How? Hone your ability to read between the lines. When people say they want more time off work what they’re really saying is they need to do more of is most meaningful. When they say they want to be heard perhaps what they need is to be understood.

These 3 phrases appeal to a person’s sense of safety, belonging, and esteem and are helpful in influencing others to follow your lead.

  • “What if…” This phrase depersonalizes the situation and creates an environment conducive to problem solving. “What if we were to try solution x?”
  • “I need your help…” This reverses roles and shifts the power dynamic, putting a subordinate in an empowered leadership role. “I need your help to solve this problem…”
  • “Would it be helpful if…” The spotlight moves from the problem and focuses attention on the solution. “Would it be helpful is we tried x instead of y?”

Whether you are the CMO trying to improve patient safety, or you simply want to get your pick of vacation spots, knowing how to flex your influence muscles is essential.

P.S. Need strategies to have more influence at work? Schedule your consult today!

Share This