The Secret to Expanding Influence by Wooing Hearts
Leaders without influence are followers. The ability to woo hearts begins with belief.
They believe because you believe.
During our interview, Kip Tindell preached a message he’s preached thousands of times. If I thought the CEO of The Container Store® was blabbing something he didn’t believe, I would have dismissed his message. But, I believe he believes – so I believe too.
Authenticity opens hearts.
Those who woo hearts:
- Ignite passion.
- Gain allegiance.
- Enjoy loyalty.
- Have the minds, hands, and feet of those who believe.
How to woo hearts:
Make people believe they matter.
“I like the wake thing. W-A-K-E like a boat’s wake. … Everything you do and everything you don’t do impacts the people around you … far far far more than you think it does. And isn’t that great?” Kip Tindell, CEO of The Container Store®.
Kip on the WAKE (2:08):
When you help people believe their behaviors impact others, you open minds to possibility. But, people who don’t believe slow the boat.
Don’t worry about the size of your boat. Worry about the wake you leave behind.
“Isn’t that great?”
When Kip said, “Isn’t that great,” I leaned in.
Perhaps you feel overwhelmed that everything you do or don’t do matters. Kip thinks it’s great because it means you matter.
The law of consequence means you matter.
“Isn’t that great?” reflects contagious optimism. Kip is no fool. The challenges ahead are monumental and thousands of people depend on his leadership. But, he controls his attitude.
Optimism energizes; pessimism deflates.
How are hearts wooed?
What closes hearts?
Pre-order Kips book: UNCONTAINABLE. (Highly recommended)
Read an excerpt.
Hear Kip present at the World Business Forum in New York City Oct 7, 2014. Use discount code LDRFREAK to save $200 on registration.
This is powerful!!! Potential is in all of us, and it is a grand day indeed when one comes to this realization for themselves. Thousands of people depend on his leadership. But he controls his attitude.” This is a life changing quote for me at this very moment. Optimism DOES energize. Thank you for this!!!!
Thanks Hopeful. It feels like Kip’s optimism touched you too. Optimism is the belief that we matter and we can make a difference. I’m thankful to learn from someone like Kip.
I don’t agree. Belief is falsifiable. Eventually followers realise there is no evidence to drive the change. Passion doesn’t make a product, service or whatever it is that one is leading. Passion is fleeting. What creates relationships is genuine love, and that is long term indispensability, interdependence, and ultimately trust. Passion is the ‘project’, but after the passion is gone, what remains is ‘operations’, the daily grind of consistently producing excellence. It seems to me there are lots of people that can and do ‘spark’ the passion, but far fewer that know how to sustain this for long periods, years if need be.
I also think that the boat’s wake is the wrong analogy. That, is water under the boat. What a leader want is wind in the sails, consistently, and controllably. Leaders direct, which is why there used to be ‘captains of industry’. Unlike generals that are fairly well aware of their objective, for a captain the other shore is an uncertainty, the only certainty being his ship’s company, his ship, and his ability to catch the wind. A general can call a halt, even withdraw from the challenge of the objective, but a captain doesn’t have this luxury of choices. Its always forward, and look out for the rocks when he gets there.
Thanks denpobedy. I’m delighted you joined in. Looks like I didn’t do a very good job at convincing you.
I was thinking about posting about love. I’m impressed that the CEO of a growing company talks about loving employees and putting them first. That may be one reason The Container Store has been a top 100 place to work, according to Forbes, for the last 20 years or so.
Regardless, I enjoyed reading your insights. Glad you too time to disagree.
Apparently convince means to cause (someone) to believe firmly in the truth of something. That is impossible, again because belief is falsifiable, so truth can only be arrived at through evidence.
Yes, employing people is a contract to form a relationship. What creates growth? Relationships do. If there is no relationship, there is no growth. Most normal people seek growth given a normal childhood. If someone doesn’t seek growth, they are not going to seek a growth-creating relationship. This is as much about personal relationships as it is about professional relationships.
If there is no relationship, there is no love, there is no growth. No growth means death. Its just that simple. As soon as organisations stop to grow, they start to die. This is self evident in nature, and has been proven by science again and again. Yet many people are in denial about this.
By the way, being in the top 100 places to work for the last 20 years is not such a great claim to fame. There is a far less done survey that would far more reflect on the effectiveness of an organisational leadership – how many past employees became employers themselves, and survived for at least seven years? Some time ago I remember in one of your posts you said that leadership was about giving. So it seems to me the greatest gift one can give is the gift of leadership. I’d say to Mr. Tindell “Kip giving”.;-)
Great point about passion being the project but he daily grind is operations. This is a valid obstacle for a leader to keep the team persistently motivated to not only get the job done, but to mimic the brain chemistry of falling in love so that joy and loyalty are unwavering.
I think this topic can be a bit more insidious than just optimism and belief in the mission, since, like the generals mentioned, this concept can turn into propaganda rather than genuine sentimental and occupational motivation quickly……no neo-reich methods here 🙂
Great opening line.
Awesome post! I am fascinated with methods to influence others – I truly believe that the power to influence is created more by what you DO than what you SAY. Thanks!!
Thanks L2. Influence is fascinating. The idea that we all have influence and all use influence is important to leadership.
The fact that Kip acts in alignment with his words lets me know he’s consistent and reliable. Influence is enhanced when people can depend on us. Our actions align with our words.
Self belief is the greatest belief one can have. Unless we belive that things can happen, we cannot make it happen. Belief in one’s capacity automatically creates the ability to woo and influence people. But belief in oneself alone is not sufficient. Ability and the capacity to woo and influence is equally necessary to have a meaningful impact.