Successful creative networkers lend out their power. They delegate authority.
I am writing this while the world is divided over the issue how to deal with Syria. It is clear for many independent observers that President Assad has killed thousands of innocent civilians. And yet, he firmly holds on to his power. It wouldn’t surprise me if Assad actually believes he is the good guy, and that half of the Syrian population just refuses to acknowledge his great contributions and vision for the country.
Research confirms that powerful people lean too heavily on their own point of view, insufficiently taking into account other people’s perspectives [Daniel Pink, To Sell Is Human]. There is an inverse relationship between power and perspective-taking. People with authority are blind to important signals, and their brains distort messages that are clear for others. For anyone who has ever had to deal with members of government, this is so obvious, it doesn’t even need explaining.
Successful creative networkers lend out their power. They delegate.
I ran many two-day Management 3.0 classes. But I often let the participants choose the topics they wanted to discuss. Sometimes they changed the time slots. Sometimes they reorganized the class room. I didn’t mind. When they felt powerful, they were better able to share their thoughts with me, and then I was better able to tweak my message and influence them.
I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before Assad is removed from his position due to lack of influence. Power is like a black hole. It has a tendency to accumulate more and more, but ultimately it just erodes and its influence seeps away. Great business transformers gain and keep influence by sharing the power they have. They ask themselves:
How Do We Lend Them Our Authority?
This is part 5 of a 10-part series about the Champfrogs Checklist, a simple tool for change agents to match their ideas for change with people’s intrinsic motivation and desires. The full checklist consists of Curiosity, Honor, Acceptance, Mastery, Power, Freedom, Relatedness, Order, Goal, and Status. The Champfrogs Checklist article is available for download via the Management Workout mailing list.