You must have heard of the phrase “Influence without authority” in the field of Product Management. If you are a Product Manager, you should know that you have to guide your teammates throughout the product development process.
You need to ensure that everyone in the company is coming together and functioning cordially to make things happen. And it becomes immense challenging to take them on board together without being their boss. Sometimes people compare Product Managers to the CEO. Let us tell you the key difference between them. It is the authority. CEO has all the power, but you don’t. So, if you want to be the right product market fit, you need to have the skill ofinfluencing without authority. Let’s find out the nitty-gritty of this aspect.
Who Does a Product Manager Be Liable To?
Product Management is a vast field that comes with varied roles and structures. So, there is a lot of uncertainty about the fact that who does a Product Manager report to.
It might happen that you are the only Product Manager in the startup where you have no Product Management team. So, you will report only either to the CTO or CEO.
If your company is slightly bigger, you may have to report to the Senior Manager, product head, director of the product, and Product Vice-President.
Meaning of “influence.”
In the field of Product Management, “influence” means how quickly and effectively a Product Manager can achieve the results they desire. To see the success of the product, you have to keep all the stakeholders on the same page. You need to make everyone agree on the aspect of prioritization and vision.
Influence is the mixture of the way you behave with your teammates, your success record, and the manner in which you present your decisions. Your spark and influence represent how much time you take to convince people with your ideas and how much they trust you in your decision-making process.
Ways To Influence Without Authority
Come with the data – There is no denying the fact that numbers don’t lie. Statistics and data add more credibility to your opinion. Without having numbers, you are just any other person with opinions. So, as a Product Manager in NYC, bring data and evidence once you talk about your opinions. It reflects your informed attitude and proves that you are speaking with the truth and credibility.
Be an active listener – You need to become an active listener if you wish to be on the top or become a leader. Create a safe space that can make people feel free to share their ideas without the fear of judgment or making them feel undervalued. You can conduct a brainstorming session for the same or send them open invitations to collaborate.
When your employees and team feel that you value their opinions and seek their help in the completion of any project, you will be more likely to succeed.
You can conduct one-to-one meetings to listen to the ideas of your team members in a more interpersonal way. Your employees should feel that they are being heard, what they tell you actually makes an impact, and their words are not just falling on deaf ears.
Think about your personal brand – Each and everything you say, especially in your workplace, affects the opinion of others about you. When you are just a beginner in this field, you have to build and maintain relationships with your employees and team to make human connections. It will help you make more influential in the long run.
There are innumerable people nowadays who love to give a kick to their credibility by establishing their personal brand. It could be anything like writing a book, maintaining a blog, or simply maintaining/building your own side project.
Embrace resistance – Do you like to have a conflict of opinion with anyone? Obviously not. Nobody likes that someone disagrees with them, especially when you feel and know that you have done it right. But sadly, that is not how things work in the business world. There will always be someone who will have a louder voice than yours or a stronger opinion than yours. Instead of feeling restless about that, embrace the resistance. It is a fact that you can’t know everything. If someone disagrees with you, take your time to understand their opinions and why they are having those. Sometimes, you might end up agreeing with the same, which can further avoid future problems.
To sum it up
Your formal authority grows as you make progress in your product career. But if you hold power to influence without authority, it is no wonder a valuable skill. Even CEOs of the company need to have enough authority to convince people. Because no one funds a venture if they disagree with your conditions, products, and services.