Sarah Dening in I Ching, the book of changes, associates the power to influence with displaying a tactic in which, without predefined ideas, there´s openness and receptivity for the others to contemplate things from other people´s point of view, without trying to flatter, manipulate or impress.
It´s a global comment on hexagram The Inner Truth (61) of The Book of Changes (you can find it associated with I (Yi) ~ The Feeding, hexagram 27 on this website). The image is wind over a lake, which constantly and softly influences the surface in a relationship that promises full influence in such basal conditions. The idea of learning takes us to become consubstantiated with other people´s circumstances, so is possible to clearly perceive what´s in the centre or nucleus of the situation. In time, this disposition for constant influencing will ease density in the mind and will increase the force to penetrate into beings and things.