Influencing Without Authority

Barbara van der Schalie, MS
Learning and Professional Development Manager
Clinical Research Directorate, Clinical Monitoring Research Program
Leidos Biomedical Research

Abstract: Effectively exercising influence, even when one may not have the formal authority to mandate action, is a challenge many clinical research professionals face in their daily work. This article describes the interpersonal and leadership skills necessary to ensure that one’s agenda is not only considered but actively requested, and how successful professionals build networks of relationships with stakeholders and influencers. This article explains the difference between influence and authority, identifies different sources of influence, and describes different influencing styles.


  • This project has been funded in whole or in part with federal funds from the National Institutes of Health’s National Cancer Institute, under Contract No. HHSN261200800001E. The content of this publication does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Department of Health and Human Services, nor does mention of trade names, commercials products, or organizations imply endorsement by the United States government.

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A Modern CRA Perspective on the Use of Technology in Clinical Trials

By Takoda Roland, CCRA, CCRP

Founder of Philadelphia Pharmaceutical Research

Disclaimer: The examples noted in the following are all firsthand accounts of the author, but for the purpose of this article have been combined into a single site visit. The visit depicted below is an aggregate of many sites and studies and is not necessarily an exact representation. The original version was written entirely on a smartphone while flying from Philadelphia to Puerto Rico.

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