On Wednesday November 16,2016, I was fortunate to be working WINx 2016. A premier event featuring speakers from around the United States to provide thoughtful insight to influence the now and next generation of law enforcement leaders. At the event, I saw many influential leaders, the Director of Illinois State Police, local Chiefs, Deputy Chiefs and Commanders and others in supervisory positions in law enforcement. Many are acquaintances and a few are friends. All have some degree of influence in law enforcement at the local, state or national level.
Among the attendees I spotted a former academy student and boots on the ground working cop. Unlike many former students, I have been fortunate to remain connected to Sam (not his real name). Sam and I chatted at breaks throughout the day and I was interested in his take on WINx.
At the end of the conference Brian Willis (owner of Winning Mind Training and co-event developer) asked the attendees several questions.
- What are your key take-aways?
- What can you do right now?
- Who are you going to tell about your take-aways?
The last question is about accountability and influence. The telling is a conversation about what you believe to be important and is shared with those who either influence you or you may influence.
Telling someone your key take-aways holds you accountable to what you want to accomplish.
I walked up to Sam as the conference ended and asked him about his experience at WINx 2016. He said the speakers all had important messages and he had acquired many of good ideas to put in his back pocket. Then joked about it staying there because he did not have influence, “I’m a street cop, nobody listens to me”.
Sam’s dilemma is share by many, a limited or fixed mindset about influence based on position. Every time you take a moment to talk, text or post on social media you are applying some level of influence to an individual or group. So I have two questions for you today, (1) Are you willing to influence the people in your circle? (2) Is that interaction positive or negative? Only you can answer that.