We influence, positively and negatively, in every action, reaction, and interaction. Getting excited about a topic, feeling frustrated about avoidable rework, or digging into a problem to root out solutions…each moment is one to be mindful of how we are perceived.

Why is that? Because even if we “just want to help” or are frustrated with our own contribution (or lack thereof) to a challenge, how we show up is watched. Interpreted. Assigned meaning. Usually with no request for confirmation from us.In an attempt to navigate the workplace, all of us do this. It’s human nature. We do this in the wild too. It’s all part of the brain taking in data points, determining if the data represents something or someone “safe” or “unsafe” and then deciding what to do about it.

It sucks, but it’s part of the job. As much as we want leaders who are authentic, genuine, transparent, and human, because we are human, we are going to interpret and assign additional meaning due to one additional factor. The power of leadership.