MaST Business Forum: June 2013 Creating an Influencing Strategy in Complex and Challenging Times

MaST Business Forum: June 2013 Creating an Influencing Strategy in Complex and Challenging Times

MaST Business Forum:  June 2013

Creating an Influencing Strategy in Complex and Challenging Times

It’s “People” that are the Problem…and the Solution…!


During these complex and challenging times, it is tempting to focus only on pressing tasks, and relationships that offer immediate results.  This can lead to us not paying sufficient attention to developing longer term influencing strategies that are likely to reap greater, more sustainable results.


In order to understand value of more thoughtful communication, we set out to address the following questions at the MaST Business Forum in June:

  • Are you confident in your current strategy for influencing others?
  • Have you considered your key stakeholders and your relationships with each of them?
  • Are you aware of how you are really perceived by these stakeholders?
  • Would a simple and structured guide to creating an influencing strategy be useful for you?


By addressing these questions yourself, or encouraging people in your team to do so, you can feel more equipped to achieve success in driving their projects forward.


Honest feedback on the real challenges

Some of the barriers to projects moving forward smoothly are often to do with communication.  Real issues that were shared at the Forum were:

  • Lack of time to really talk with people – they just don’t take lunch any more
  • Budget cuts and job role changes – who do I actually need to talk to?
  • The future is a bit like a fog – how do we inspire people to do things when everything is so uncertain?


Do any of these resonate with you?  If so you may like to join the MaST Leadership and Transformation Forum on Linkedin to share ideas and tips on dealing with them.


What can I do, even if I didn’t come to the Forum?  The Value of the Forums is that people can come, for free to share ideas and have great conversations.  If you missed it, we would love to talk more about these three simple and practical ways to improve communication and influencing:

Work through the 6 steps of influencing:

  • What is the Situation I am facing?
  • What is my Goal? Is it the right Goal?
  • Who is it that I need to influence?
  • What makes them tick?
  • What different ways of communicating are available to me?
  • What is the first thing I need to do?

Create a Stakeholder Map to think through strong and weaker relationships

Recognise whether I am being both “Seen and Heard” by people who need to be on my radar

After the Forum, delegates shared some valuable thoughts of ways that an influencing strategy could help achieve their goals:

  • “Using the 6 steps of influencing was really helpful to see that I have better choices before I go straight to my normal behaviour of just saying what I think”
  • “Taking time to create a stakeholder map around the goal of my current projects was really useful to see things in a different light”
  • “It is really intriguing to think of how I appear on other people’s ‘radars’, and the need to be both seen and heard to get things done well”


In taking the time to think about different ways of communicating and influencing, people become part of the solution for moving projects forward.


If you would like to read more, we recommend: Influence, the Psychology of Persuasion by Robert Cialdini


As at all MaST Forums, we offer them for free because we believe in the value of conversation and sharing ideas.  If you, or members of your team, would like to find out more about how and why creating an influencing strategy is even more important in these complex and challenging times, please do contact us.


Also, if you like to attend the next Free Business Forum for L&D specialists please let us know.


Please call: +44 (0)800 316 9090 or Email or visit