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close this bookLeadership and Influence - Student Manual (FEMA-EMI, 1991, 208 p.)
close this folderLESSON PLANS
View the documentUnit I Introduction
View the documentUnit II Personal Values
View the documentUnit III Personal Styles
View the documentUnit IV Conflict Management Styles
View the documentUnit V The Impact of Different Influence Styles
View the documentUnit VI Exercising Leadership
View the documentUnit VII Exercising Power
View the documentUnit VIII Motivation
View the documentUnit IX Group Dynamics
View the documentUnit X Tying the Concepts Together: Course Integration & Application
View the documentUnit XI Presentation of Influence Plans
View the documentUnit XII Conclusion

Unit V The Impact of Different Influence Styles



At the conclusion of this unit, you will be able to:

1. Define and describe four basic styles of influencing others; and
2. Given a situation, explain which influence style would work best


Influence is often called the highest form of leadership.

Influence means changing another person's preferences.

Why is influence more important for emergency managers than those in other professions?


Assertive Persuasion (AP)

- reflects logic, reason, advocacy

Reward & Punishment (R & P)

- using pressures and incentives to control behavior of others

Participation & Trust (P & T)

- influence others by involving them in the decision making process

Common Vision (C & V)

- persuade others by identifying shared experiences, objectives, and values

According to the Inventory, which influence styles do you use most often?

.....Least often?


Which influence style(s) might be most appropriate in each of the following situations? Why?

1. A meeting to discuss the process for writing a county-wide emergency operations plan.

2. A meeting at the EOC where the decision must be made to either evacuate the town or hope the dam holds.

3. A campaign to purchase a warning system for the local community.

Effective leaders are aware of the styles of influence they use and when certain styles will work better than others.

Influence Plan Update: Return to page II-14 and make some notes on the influence styles of the person you are attempting to influence.



Please answer this list of questions in terms of what you believe you do in situations where you have a need to influence others. Answer each question to describe how you behave in typical day-to-day work situations.

Be as objective as you can in describing your behavior. The questionnaire will be of little or no value to you unless you provide an accurate and objective description.

If you find you have difficulty making general or overall ratings, focus on situations where it is especially important for you to be influential, or where you have some questions about your personal effectiveness (e.g., managing subordinates, or interacting with community leaders and politicians).

For each of the statements listed, enter on the Scoring Sheet the number corresponding to your choice from among the five possible responses given below. Enter the number:

-2 if you DEFINITELY DISAGREE, that is, if the statement definitely does not describe your behavior

-1 if you are INCLINED TO DISAGREE, that is, if you are not definite, but think the statement does not tend to describe how you behave

0 if you are UNCERTAIN WHETHER TO AGREE OR DISAGREE, that is, if you are not sure whether the statement does or does not describe your behavior

+1 if you are INCLINED TO AGREE, that is, if you are not definite, but think that the statement tends to describe how you behave

+2 if you DEFINITELY AGREE, that is, if the statement definitely describes how you behave

Copyright 1979 by Situation Management Systems, Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction by any means is prohibited without written permission.

Please be sure to answer every question; otherwise it will be impossible to compare your results with those of others who have completed the Inventory.

1. I put a lot of energy into arguing about what to do.

2. I do not hesitate to point out others' mistakes.

3. I hand important tasks over to others even when there is a risk of being personally criticized if they are not done well.

4. When others become uncertain or discouraged, my enthusiasm carries them along.

5. I put forward lots of ideas and plans.

6. 1 am quick to praise another's performance.

7. I am willing to be influenced by others.

8. I can bring others to see the exciting possibilities in a situation.

9. I put together a good logical argument.

10. I articulate standards which I think others ought to meet.

11. I encourage people to come up with their own solutions to problems.

12. My way of speaking conveys a sense of excitement to others.

13. When opposed, I an quick to come forward with a counterargument.

14. I let people know the standards by which their performance will be judged.

15. I am receptive to the ideas and suggestions of others.

16. When working with others, I communicate my belief in the value and importance of the common task.

17. I provide detailed plans as to how the job should be done.

18. I tend to make judgments about what others do or say.

19. I am quick to admit my own mistakes and errors.

20. I articulate an exciting vision of what could be.

21. I suggest alternatives to the proposals which others have made.

22. I pass on to others praise and criticism which I have heard about their work.

23. I sympathize with others when they have difficulties.

24. My enthusiasm is contagious.

25. I push my ideas vigorously.

26. People can readily tell if I disapprove of what they do or say.

27. I listen to and try to use the ideas raised by others.

28. I am unable to put into words the hopes, aspirations, and fears which others may feel.

29. It is not unusual for me to stick my neck out with ideas and suggestions.

30. I use the power and authority I have to make others comply.

31. If others become angry or upset, I listen with understanding.

32. I am skillful at using images and figures of speech to present exciting possibilities.

33. I put over my ideas clearly.

34. I let people know in advance what is required of them.

35. I readily admit my lack of knowledge and expertise in a situation.

36. I help others become aware of the strengths and advantages they can have by pulling together.

37. I defend my own ideas energetically.

38. I offer bargains or exchange favors to get what I want from others.

39. I put as much effort into developing the ideas of others as I do my own.

40. I am skillful in articulating the aims and goals that people have in common.

41. I anticipate objections to my point of view and am ready with a counterargument.

42. I give frequent and specific feedback as to whether my requirements are being met.

43. 1 help others to get a hearing.

44. In persuading others, I appeal to their values, emotions, and feelings.

45. I frequently disregard the ideas of others in favor of my own proposals.

46. People always know whether or not they are measuring up to my standards.

47. I listen sympathetically to people who do not share my views.

48. I generate excitement and enthusiasm through my use of colorful language.

49. When other people disagree with my ideas, I do not give up but find another way to persuade them.

50. I make it clear what I am willing to give in return for what I want.

51. I am quite open about my hopes and aspirations and personal difficulties in achieving them.

52. I foster an esprit de corps where others feel a sense of common purpose.

53. I am ingenious in producing evidence in support of my own proposals.

54. I follow up the performance of others to find out whether my standards are being met.

55. I show tolerance and acceptance of others' feelings.

56. I use emotionally charged language to generate enthusiasm.

57. 1 talk about my own ideas more than I listen to those of others.

58. 1 give orders and instructions which I expect to be obeyed.

59. I accept criticism without becoming defensive.

60. I help others to see how they can achieve more by working together.

61. I present my ideas in an organized way.

62. I check up to see whether others are keeping their side of the bargain.

63. I help others to express themselves.

64. I help others with whom I am working feel personally involved with and responsible for the success of the project.

65. I draw attention to inconsistencies in the ideas of others.

66. I use rewards and punishments to make other people do what I want.

67. I go out of my way to show understanding of the needs and wants of others.

68. I strive to develop in those with whom I work a sense of unity and common purpose against the outside world.

69. It is not unusual for me to interrupt others while they are talking.

70. I judge people on what they do rather that what they say.

71. I do not pretend to be confident when I feel uncertain.

72. I help people I work with to find common values and aims which strengthen their commitment to one another.


The strategies or behaviors that people use to influence other people in face-to-face situations can be organized into four basic Influence Styles:







This style is characterized by the use of the power of logic, facts, opinions, and ideas to persuade others. Individuals who use this style are forward with ideas, proposals, and suggestions about what to do and how to do it; they are not afraid to stick their necks out and submit their ideas to the test of others' reactions. They are ingenious in marshaling evidence and arguments in support of the proposals they support and in rebuttal to those with which they disagree. They are persistent and energetic in persuading others. They often do not listen very well to the points others raise or they listen only to find weaknesses in the others' position. Characteristic of this style is an emphasis on logical argument as opposed to appeals to emotions or the use of power and authority to compel compliance. People who use the style well are usually highly verbal and articulate and participate very actively in discussions and arguments about ideas, plans, and proposals. They enjoy the cut and thrust of verbal battles, and even when they are defending an inferior position they battle away with determination.

Assertive Persuasion is very familiar Influence Style because it is the common language of most managerial problem solving and decision making. Indeed, many people overuse or depend too heavily on logic and fact as a basis for influence. The fact is, AP does not always work because people do not always approach situations or decisions logically and rationally. Rarely can you change feelings with facts. In such situations, continued reliance on Assertive Persuasion often results in higher levels of overt or covert resistance.



This style is characterized by the use of pressures and incentives to control the behavior of others. This may take the form of offering rewards for compliance or threatening punishment for noncompliance. It may involve the use of naked power or more indirect and veiled pressures may be exerted through the use of status, prestige, and formal authority. There is a liberal use of praise and criticism, approval and disapproval, and of moralistic judgments of right and wrong.

People who use Reward and Punishment effectively go out of their way to let others know that they want, expect, or require of them, and what standards will be used in judging their performance. They then follow up to find out what has been done and administer approval and disapproval, praise and blame, rewards and punishments accordingly. They tend to be specific and detailed in communicating their requirements, and they follow up quickly with the positive and negative incentives. Psychologists say that effective use of the style involves much heavier administration of praise than of criticism, but many who use this style do not allow this dictum: they may be more often negative than positive. This ultimately will reduce the potentially positive effects of the style.

An important process in using Reward and Punishment is called the management of contingencies, which means communicating clearly to others what they must do in order to get what they want and avoid negative consequences. This is an important aspect of much bargaining and negotiating where offers and counteroffers, threats and counterthreats are a big part of the action.

In using both Reward and Punishment and Assertive Persuasion, one may agree or disagree with others' ideas or actions. The difference lies in the reason for the agreement or disagreement. In Assertive Persuasion, the basis for agreement or disagreement is facts or logic, that is, what is true or what will work best. With Reward and Punishment, the basis for agreement or disagreement (really approval and disapproval) is the personal preference of the individual, based on his or her belief system or standards regarding what is appropriate or inappropriate, good or bad, acceptable or unacceptable. The belief systems or standards which underlie the use of Reward and Punishment can come from any number of sources, such as religious conviction, social convention, personal bias or prejudice, or simply strong personal preference.

In using Reward and Punishment effectively, it is important to understand the distinction between assertiveness and aggressiveness. Being assertive is standing up for yourself, stating your needs and expectations directly and forcefully. The message is that you have certain needs and expectations that must be dealt with; you cannot be pushed around or ignored. Assertiveness may or may not accomplish your immediate goal, but you will respect yourself, and in most cases others will respect your strength.

Being aggressive has a goal of hurting others, feeling stronger by weakening them. Although it may accomplish your objective in the short run, usually it leads to disrupted communications and calls forth counteraggression from others.

Let's take one simple case study and see what the appropriate assertive R&P response might be. John Pinedo's boss doesn't like to conduct performance appraisal interviews. As a result, John rarely, if ever, gets feedback on his performance. He also knows that his personnel file is incomplete, which may hurt him when his name comes up for a transfer or promotion. He is getting more and more worried about it.


John lets the date for his performance review pass without saying anything. A few months later, he says to his boss, "Sam, if you get some open time, I'd like to talk with you about how I'm doing." John's boss says, "Sure," but nothing happens. John thinks more and more about asking for a transfer or leaving the organization.


A month after the performance appraisal should have been done, John goes into his boss's office, shuts the doors, and says: "Sam, every supervisor around here except you has finished all their performance reviews. As a result, I'm going to get shafted when it comes to a promotion or transfer. You may not care about what happens to me, but I sure do!"

Assertive R&P:

Two weeks before the performance review should be held, John goes into his boss's office and says: "Sam, my annual performance appraisal comes up two weeks from today, and it's very important to me that we complete it on schedule. I've begun to prepare for it, and I need at least two hours of your time before October first. Let's get a time down on both our calendars now."



The efficacy of this style depends on involving the other(s) in decision making or problem-solving processes. When others can be induced to take an active part in making a decision, their commitment to carry it out is increased, and the amount of follow-up and supervision required is markedly reduced. Their energy is actively contributed to the work, and the amount of effort required from the influencer is reduced. Thus, where the Assertive Persuasion and Reward and Punishment Styles may be thought of as pushing the other to do what is required, Participation and Trust involves drawing the other in, pulling rather than pushing.

To use P&T effectively, others must be made to feel that their resources are relevant to the task at hand, that you are willing to make an effort to obtain their input, and that you value their contributions. People find it easier to contribute when they believe that others will not belittle or ignore their contributions, and when there is an atmosphere of openness and nondefensiveness. In short, participation is discouraged by attempts to gain control.

Persons who rely a good deal on the Participation and Trust Style tend to listen actively, drawing out contributions from others and showing understanding and appreciation when contributions are forthcoming. They tend to focus on the strengths and positive resources of others, and to be willing to give others freedom and personal responsibility in work. They do a lot of building on and extending of others' ideas, rather than pushing their own proposals, and are quick to give credit to others for their contributions. Rather than counterattacking when their own ideas and proposals are questioned, persons who use this style tend to be open and nondefensive about their own limitations of knowledge and resources, and they do not put up a strong front to hide their own weaknesses. By their example, they try to create trust and openness in relationships, so that others feel accepted for what they are and do not feel the need to compete for attention and control.

It is important to emphasize that we are discussing Participation and Trust as an Influence Style. We are not talking about Participation and Trust because they are democratic, nice, or designed to make people feel better. Participation and Trust is a powerful influence tool in and of itself; and it can also be used to strengthen other styles. Each of the other three influence Styles can be used with greater precision and impact when Participation and Trust is used initially to find out what the influence target needs, or what he or she is thinking or feeling.

Finally, Participation and Trust is unique among the Influence Styles in that it is Reciprocal: you must leave yourself open to being influenced in order to influence. Individuals who draw others out and appear to listen, but who consistently demonstrate unwillingness to be influenced, rarely exert influence through the use of P&T.



Common Vision involves identifying and articulating a common or shared vision of what the future of an organization, group, or individual could be and strengthening others' beliefs that the desired outcome can be achieved through their individual and collective efforts. The Common Vision Style involves mobilizing the energy and resources of others through appeals to their hopes, values, and aspirations. It also works through activating the feelings of strength and confidence that are generated by being one of a larger group which shares a common purpose.

Common Vision shares with Assertive Persuasion an emphasis on the ability to present ideas verbally. It differs in that the appeal is not primarily to the intellect, but rather to emotions and values held by the recipient. Further, the attempt is not so much to inject energy and enthusiasm into the others as it is to activate the commitment and strength which are bound up in one's hopes, aspirations, and ideals and to channel that energy into work and problem solving.

Typical of the skills possessed by people who use Common Vision effectively is the ability to see and articulate to others the exciting possibilities which exist in an idea or project, and to project these possibilities enthusiastically to others. In essence, Common Vision implies a future orientation, and the skilled practitioner uses image and metaphors which kindle excitement about a better future which listeners may value. He or she also helps them to identify the values, hopes, and aspirations which they have in common, and to feel that strength in unity which is found in cohesive groups. The metaphors which kindle excitement about a better future which listeners may value. He or she also helps them to identify the values, hopes, and aspirations which they have in common, and to feel that strength in unity which is found in cohesive groups. The emphasis is on what we can accomplish to make a better future for all of us if we work together to achieve our common goals and ideals. Charismatic leaders like Winston Churchill and John Kennedy used a lot of Common Vision, as did others like Hitler, Mussolini, and Napoleon. As with all the Influence Styles, Common Vision can be effective in the pursuit of high ideals or destructive ends.


Instructions: Enter the score you have assigned each question (-2, -1, 0, +1, +2) in the space provided. PLEASE NOTE: The item numbers progress across the page from left to right, rather than in columns.

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Sum of
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R & P

P & T



Add the numbers in each column with a plus sign and enter the sum. Then add the numbers with a minus sign and enter this sum. Ignore zeros. Subtract the smaller total from the larger and enter the result under "overall score." Give the sign (+ or -) of the larger subtotal to the overall score.


Take each of your four Influence Styles scores in turn, and (1) locate your absolute or numerical score in the left-hand column on the next page; then (2) look to the right, along the same row, to the appropriate column to find your percentile score.

These norms are based on a sample of several hundred British and American middle managers in both line and staff positions who have filled out the Influence Style Inventory. If, for example, your P & T overall score (from your Scoring Sheet) was 20 or 21, you would be at the 61st percentile, meaning that you scored higher on P & T than 60 percent of the sample, and lower than 39 percent.



A & P

R & P

P & T


36 to 37





34 to 35





32 to 33





30 to 31





28 to 29





26 to 27





24 to 25





22 to 23





20 to 21





18 to 19





16 to 17





14 to 15





12 to 13





10 to 11





08 to 09





06 to 07





04 to 05





02 to 03





00 to 01





-01 to -02





-03 to -04





-05 to -06





-07 to -08





-09 to -10





-11 to -12





-13 to -14





-15 to -16





-17 to -18





-19 to -20






Instructions: (1) Make an "X" on the vertical Assertive Persuasion (AP) scale at the point of your percentile score for AP. (2) Now do the same for your remaining three percentile scores, using the appropriate vertical scale. (3) Draw a line to connect your four "Xs".







R & P

P & T




Assertive Persuasion

R & P


Reward and Punishment

P & T


Participation and Trust



Common Vision