While most of us have grown up being taught that the letter “I” has no place in the word “team,” teams are wholly made up of individual advantages that contribute to the collective power of the group.
In Individual Influence, authors Brian Smith, PhD and Mary Griffin go far beyond this axiom, making a persuasive case that even a company or team of individual players is still an “Individual” at its core―expressing the collective influence of all those who play a role in it. Thus, there is not just one “I” in team, but many.
In the first installment of this series, readers will be led on a far-from-typical journey of self-discovery punctuated by often humorous stories and tangible steps to put the wisdom into practice.
Demonstrated through real-life experience working with and leading teams, the authors cover many transformative concepts, including:
- How to be your best self so that your unique influence radiates from you
- Reaping the benefits of slowing down and existing within the moment
- How to delegate, hold accountable, define values, and achieve balance
- Setting realistic success criteria for yourself and learning to celebrate small victories
- Gaining more significant influence over your own conscious thoughts and reshaping your reality
Individual Influence revolutionizes the paradigm of traditional self-help books, presenting a clear, logical flow in implementing solutions to everyday challenges we face. It is a call for readers to discover who they are, and in doing so, there is a new world filled with unlimited possibilities waiting to be explored.
About the Authors
Dr. Brian Smith
Brian Smith was born to a lower-middle-class family, raised between Illinois and California, and delved into the world of drugs as a teen – eventually learning the consequences. After being forced to choose between joining the army and going to jail, he lifted himself up from rock bottom and went on to build the American dream. Brian has built over fifty successful companies and helped over eighteen thousand business owners, leaders, managers, and employees realize their individual advantages on all seven continents.
Brian has a PhD in organizational psychology, a master’s degree in management information systems, a bachelor’s degree in accounting, and is a certified Six Sigma master black belt consultant. He has helped business owners and managers since 1988, and leverages both his thirty years of consulting experience and his varied and extensive educational background to share his insights on how to best approach personal and professional development. His love for consulting is driven by his passion to see individuals reach their full potential, as is evidenced by the thoughtful and meticulous approach he employs throughout the book.
In 1995 when I began working with Cornerstone Consulting Group, Inc. This company bought Business Account Solutions (our first consulting company) from us. It was with CCG, Inc. that I first recognized each individual using their advantages for the betterment of their team and clients.
That each person (individual) is an advantage to themselves and others. That the actions we take (individually) are also an advantage that helps us to gain experience in life. That experience is what we use to positively or negatively influence others. Simultaneously, we are each part of something bigger than ourselves—an Individual (group) that can be defined as family, friends, companies, towns, states, countries, etc.
Realizing in each moment that I am in control and responsible for my own destiny; whatever that may bring. Prosperity can be figurative to some and literal to others; prosperity is an individual concept that will vary in definition between us all and when reached it creates advantages individual to our self.
Live in the present. There is nothing more important than what you are doing at this moment, it’s the time you have to make your best decision!
It’s actually a series of books: the 1632 Series by Eric Flint.
I love to cook with my wife (especially when it’s nice enough to grill), ride my jet ski, and watch baseball. That being said my greatest joy in life is spending time with my family!
Mary Griffin, Brian’s middle child, has a bachelor’s in English literature and minored in psychology at the University of Redlands. Mary is currently working towards her master’s in organizational leadership. She has been working with IA Business Advisors and her father since June 2014, starting out as an editor. After graduating in 2016, she became a full-time employee; while her main job still revolves around writing and editing, she enjoys helping her team with various projects ranging from presentation creation to data analysis and is looking forward to her future career in leadership development. Her dog, Bilbo, comes to work with her daily and is adored by all who meet him. Mary’s biggest passions in life are animal advocacy, music, reading, and art.
One of my strengths is identifying and helping people develop what makes them unique; the individual advantages philosophy directly correlates to this strength, making it a perfect opportunity for me to help more people realize their individual advantages. I love developing people and watching them grow.
That no matter how small or insignificant someone may feel, they are still an integral part of this world. Nobody is quite like them and that gives them a unique edge to offer everyone around them. Their influence matters and they matter.
Finding contentment in knowing that nothing is certain and nearly everything is chaos; in that chaos, I choose to see the beauty that surrounds me. My prosperity comes from finding the smallest glimmer of hope in a vast sea of darkness—knowing that I am known and seen by those who love me and whom I love.
In the words of Neil deGrasse Tyson, “For me, I am driven by two main philosophies: know more today about the world than I knew yesterday and lessen the suffering of others. You’d be surprised how far that gets you.”
Hands down The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. However, The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini are in close second and third. I prefer reading sad/dark fiction; it helps keep me humble.
One of my favorite hobbies is making music on my computer. I love drawing with charcoal and am trying my hand at painting. Reading is always a favorite, too. My favorite nice-weather pastime is hiking period.