Increasing Your Social Impact Through Growing Your Influence – by Alex Swallow

Do you feel that there are some things that aren’t right about the world? Do you want to make a difference and step up and be counted in helping it to change?

I do and I have wanted to for a long time. Sometimes finding the right way to get there isn’t easy (some tips here) and it took me a long time to feel that I wasn’t being pretentious by calling myself a social entrepreneur, but I’ve known for a long time that I want to leave the earth a little better- or, failing that, at least a little different- to how I found it.

So, if we know we want to have an impact, what are the key factors in making sure that we achieve our goals? We might think of things like gaining supporters; finding ways to educate people about our cause; changing the debate and attracting funding.

I would argue that the key way that we can do this is by growing our influence, both as individuals and as organisations.

What do I mean by influence? This explains more.

If you work or volunteer for a charity, you might be particularly interested in this talk I gave at an international charity conference on the subject of influence. In the talk I discuss why influence matters, the modern world of influence and how you can grow your influence and the influence of the charitable organisation you support.

In particular, I outline my model called The LEAPS Model, which explains the different areas in which you need to grow your influence:


L- Likeability – Do you relate well to others? Are you perceived as empathetic? Do people want to support you because they like what you stand for and who you are as a person?


E- Expertise – There are two parts to this. One- Have you built expertise in one or a number of areas that people see you as a leader in (and are willing to pay you for)? Two- Are you an expert at influencing other people? Do you understand how to do it?


A- Authenticity – Do you give people your real self? Are you able to express yourself with your true voice? Are you offering something unique?


P- Personal Brand – What are you known for? Is your brand consistent? Do you project your brand through everything that you do?


S- Synthesis – How are the other elements brought together? Are you strategic about growing your influence, using your influence and have you worked out what you really want to do if you gain more influence? Are you making sure that more influence is resulting in more impact?


I’m currently living in another country, experiencing life as a digital nomad, but the influence I’ve already built up in the areas that I care about enable me to still make the contribution that I want- as long as I have an internet connection.

If you take the time to grow the influence you have, you will be able to make a much bigger difference to the causes that matter to you.

If you’d like to learn more on the subject of influence, this video introduces you to my channel, which has two series covering different topics that may be of interest to you.

I wish you well in growing your influence, increasing your social impact and changing the world!

About the Author

Alex Swallow

Alex Swallow is The Influence Expert, helping you to grow your influence to increase the impact that you have on the world. He is also the Founder of Young Charity Trustees, the owner of the Social Good Six interview series and the previous Chief Executive of the Small Charities Coalition. He is currently experiencing life as a digital nomad, starting his journey in the Canary Islands and now living in Berlin.