Understanding and applying concepts of influence is a critical leadership skill greatly valued in organizations. The goal of this assignment is to write about a particular problem of influence and a recommended solution. The purpose of this assignment is to develop: ¥ an understanding of the social psychological principles that underlie the processes of interpersonal influence; ¥ an awareness of the tactics used to influence behavior; ¥ the ability to analyze real situations and take action to bring about desired results; and, ¥ the ability to apply and think critically about influence tactics.
• Identify a situation or problem that you have had or are having where someone (usually another individual, but possibly a group) is not doing what you want them to do. Your goal is to use one or more concepts (see suggestions below) to identify a way for you to exercise influence and change the situation.
• Draw on a current situation in which you would like to be able to influence outcomes. Do not use a past situation or write with hindsight (the understanding that you have of a situation only after it has happened and that means you would have done things in a different way).
• Then, use two of your chosen concepts to imagine something practical and immediate that you can do to exercise influence.
• Next, either try it and report results, or role play your actions with a friend and discuss the results of the role play. Finally, analyze concepts you used, drawing on thinking encouraged by the exercise you designed and carried out. Your paper should contain the following sections:
1. Introduction Highlight the paper’s focus and purpose. Then, describe: ¥ The situation or problem on which you will focus: What is going on, who is involved, what is bothering you about the situation, and what do you wish was different and better? ¥ Describe the situation in a concrete but concise manner. Note that you do NOT have to figure out WHY this is happening. ¥ The influence concepts you will use: What concepts are you going to use? ¥ Do not just refer to the concepts, e.g., “Appeal to authority.” Explain the concepts in your own words. Draw on examples from your own experience or reading. ¥ Why does this influence concept seem applicable here? Take your time “unpacking” the elements of the problem you have described and showing the reader how they link to your concepts.
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