Control vs. Influence

There’s a distinction between control and influence. If I think about it in terms of your workday. What are the things you can control as opposed to the things you can influence?

Control the controllables in your day.

You can control…

  • Attitude—how you react to things
  • The structure of your day—when and how you show up
  • Your personal habits

Think about an investment, I can potentially control the taxes paid, the amount I fund, and the type of investment. But what I can’t control is the market, those external forces. I can, however, control how I react to those forces that ultimately can influence the outcome.

When you move from being an employee to being a leader, you shift from controlling outcomes to influencing outcomes. So how can you influence as a leader?

In my leadership journey, I was best as a leader when…

  • I embraced my values and did not compromise them. While I couldn’t control results by communicating my values, I felt grounded.
  • I was an active listener. I was able to stay present and maintained clarity.
  • I created an energetic culture that promoted connection. This influenced better results and enhanced performance.

Sometimes as leaders we try to control things that should be influenced. A micromanager feeds off control and limits opportunity whereas a true leader trusting their team expands horizons and can grow greater outcomes.

Trust your team and trust the process. It’s about putting your confidence in people and helping them grow. When you embrace a culture of trust, clearly state your vision, mission, and values, and share your goals, you will be amazed at how your team gets it all done right in front of you.

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