Here’s a scenario: you’re running a meeting, you have a great agenda, you’re well prepared, you know the people in the room well and you’re fairly certain that this meeting is more of a next steps session as everyone appears to be on the same page. At the start of the meeting, there is one dissenting voice. As the meeting progresses, that one contrarian has created two more and then three. By the end of the meeting, all the progress made has been derailed. At best, things have stagnated, at worst; you may have to start over from stage one.
So what happened?
The answer lies in the relationship between energy and influence. There is an idea that “the stronger energy wins”. This means that the energy or influence that each of us possess can, when focused, impact and change others. This may seem a bit abstract or unrealistic until you consider that we all know someone that is a great motivator, and/or someone who can be a real drain to be around. When in the presence of the great motivator, we feel like we can do anything. When we are around the hardened pessimist, we may feel like nothing is possible. Both instances are examples of the relationship between energy and influence.
Going back to the example of the meeting, the energy of the room is changed by the influence of the person who is, at that time, knowingly or unknowingly manifesting the stronger energy. If we can be conscious of the energy of the people in our meeting or on our team, and can recognize when that energy is gaining momentum against the direction we would like to see, we could make a choice of how we want to respond. Of course, if we want to shift the energy of the room, we have to not only want to bring that energy forward; we have to “be” that energy. Essentially, we have to do more than try to motivate or inspire, we have to become motivation and/or inspiration. Another example of this is the fine line between trying to lead people and being a leader.
By understanding how we are presenting in the group and realizing our choice to influence things a certain way, we may be able to move the room in the direction we would like to see, but once again, “the stronger energy wins”.