Now is the time for all good communicators to step up and lead

It’s not enough to be a mouthpiece for the higher-ups or a liaison among key factions within your organization. You have the power—and a responsibility—to make things happen.

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When I was growing up in the world of PR, many successful communicators were primarily doers.

Now, however, communicators must be leaders to be effective.

There are a number of similarities between the skills that have always been required for effective leadership and those needed to be a successful communicator today:

1. Understanding influence

If leaders are “those who have followers,” it’s clear that one can’t be a leader unless one understands and appropriately applies the concept of influence.

It’s as simple as this: “No influence, no followers. No followers, you’re not a leader.”

To be successful, there are two ways in which today’s communications leader must understand and apply influence. The first is the role of influence in communications today. The second is the crucial need for the communicator to have influence among key decision-makers in her or his organization.

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