How to build your influence no matter where you work in the car dealership

Today on Inside Automotive, we’re pleased to welcome back Bill Berman, executive coach, founder of Berman Leadership Development, and the author of Influence and ImpactBerman is a seasoned consultant with more than 30 years of experience and has consulted executives and C-suite business leaders. In this segment, Berman discusses how to build influence with managers and executives at the top of the company.

We want our leaders to be leaders, and we want to be led through times like this, says Berman. An executive or somebody in a C Suite position has a million things to think about, like how they can deliver value, acquire the value, design their organization, hire employees, and more.

There are three foundational elements to influence. First is expertise. You have to be able to deliver every single time. First, consistent execution of your strategy and the ability to communicate effectively are crucial. Be brief and focus on the quality of the message. The second is storytelling. Tell senior leaders the end of the story first, and then tell them why you think that’s the case. The third piece is to think like an executive. Think about the big picture.

You have to know the kind of organization you work with, and you have to know whether management has given you the power to make decisions and take action or whether they’re looking for you to make recommendations.

Berman says he sees a lot of middle management and senior leadership employees who think they should have complete autonomy to do whatever they want without vetting it with their managers. Most of the time, managers want to know that you’ve thought it through and that you’ve considered alternatives, and that your plan is data-based.

Now, in a post-COVID world, remote environments and remote working are typical, there’s been a shift in the balance of power in many organizations. You can get the work done remotely, but building a culture and experience requires some in-person contact, explains Berman.

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