Influence subtly – Brief Article

Influence subtly – Brief Article


The business world has long been ruled by strong personalities. To achieve power, you must command it, says conventional wisdom. And while a dominant personality may be necessary in certain situations, a less forceful demeanor can also wield influence.

So suggests Judith C. Tingley, Ph.D., in her book, The Power of Indirect Influence (AMACOM, $17.95). Tingley maintains that aggressive behavior in business is very much a product of Western society, “based on the belief that to-the-point, cut-to-the-chase, say-it-like-it-is communication is always the best and the most fitting technique for all influence situations,” she writes. “Intelligent leaders will begin to recognize that indirect influence skills are more sophisticated, versatile, and often more effective in bringing about a desired outcome.”

The book delves into those subtle skills (“modeling and matching,” “acting in accord,” “reframing,” “paradox,” “confusing,” “the Columbo Approach,” “storytelling and metaphor,” and “humor”), and instructs the reader on how to implement them in various settings with varying personalities.

Overall, Tingley does a good job of arguing the merits of subtle influence. Read this book, and you too might be convinced.

The Power of Indirect Influence by Judith C. Tingley, Ph.D. (AMACOM, $17.95)

COPYRIGHT 2001 Earl G. Graves Publishing Co., Inc.

COPYRIGHT 2001 Gale Group