Sunday, April 3, 2022

The influencer thing

Energy dissipates as the square of the distance from the emitter to the receiver -- if the distance increases by a factor of 2, the energy decreases by a factor of 4. (*)
The fact is, even an enormous energy source may have little effect at long distance, and increasingly less as the distance lengthens.
So that's the physics for the day.
How do these physics apply to the PMO? 

Influence at a distance
The plain fact is: if you want to maximize your influence, you have to be close to the flag pole -- be at the center of decision making and in the room, at the table, where your energy is maximum.

And, of course, you have to have something of substance to say. But, I'll leave the content effect on influence to another posting.

Now you say, remote video conferences are all the rage, and so how does distance make a difference?
And I say:
  • No virtual conference setting is as clear as being there; there are losses
  • A good deal of communication is lost in the restricted bandwidth, particularly the informal communications during breaks and the body language exchanged off camera
  • If you're really far away, everyone knows you can't get to the flag pole in a hurry, so your influence is discounted
  • All the power of the "casual" encounter at just the right moment is lost
So, how to have influence at a distance
  • Create intimacy and familiarity by being a frequent communicator
  • Be up front and noisy about your points of view
  • Give feedback on everything so they know you are listening and thinking
  • Be a contributor; be consequential -- get things done. Avoid the empty suit "all talk"
  • Innovate where possible. Be the source, rather than the sink for energy


(*) The dissipation can be disturbed by many environmental factors, so the square-effect assumes ideal conditions for the energy to travel outward.

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