Definition of “influence” - English Dictionary

“influence” in English

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influencenoun [ C or U ]

uk /ˈɪn.flu.əns/ us /ˈɪn.flu.əns/

B2 the power to have an effect on people or things, or a person or thing that is able to do this:

Helen's a bad/good influence on him.
He has a huge amount of influence over the city council.
Christopher hoped to exert his influence to make them change their minds.
At the time she was under the influence of her father.

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influenceverb [ T ]

uk /ˈɪn.flu.əns/ us /ˈɪn.flu.əns/

(Definition of “influence” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

“influence” in American English

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influenceverb [ T ]

us /ˈɪnˌflu·əns/ /ɪnˈflu-/

to cause someone to change a behavior, belief, or opinion, or to cause something to be changed:

Businesses make large contributions to members of Congress, hoping to influence their votes on key issues.
She was influenced by the common-sense views of her grandparents.
That speech influenced the course of American history.

influencenoun [ C/U ]

us /ˈɪnˌflu·əns/ /ɪnˈflu-/

the power to have an effect on people or things, or someone or something having such power:

[ C ] The kid next door is a bad/good influence on Kevin.
[ U ] She used her influence to get her son a summer job.

(Definition of “influence” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

“influence” in Business English

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uk /ˈɪnfluəns/ us

[ C or U ] the ability to have an effect on people or events:

exert/have/exercise (an) influence He is close enough to the President to exert influence.
(an) influence on sth Bloggers are expanding their influence on American politics.
(an) influence over sth Consumer groups act as champions and have critical influence over industry.
considerable/profound/growing influence He called on the industry to use its considerable influence to help resolve the situation.

[ C ] a person or thing that is able to have an effect on other people or on events:

International influences in the form of technology, systems and capital have historically been a feature of industrialization and economic growth.
be an influence on sb/sth She has been a big influence on me in my career.
considerable/great/major influence

See also

influenceverb [ T ]

uk /ˈɪnfluəns/ us

to affect or change how someone or something develops, behaves, or thinks:

Many analysts regard the state of the U.S. job market as a major factor influencing consumer confidence.
influence how/what/when An organization's values have been shown to influence how employees interact with each other.

(Definition of “influence” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

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My personal analysis of this is that we are only able to influence the choice of these people to a very small degree.
When we act together, we exercise influence.
Internal documents are not defined and are to be kept secret if their publication would have a decisive influence on a decision-making process.
There is no doubt at all that, in the absence of a democratic counterweight, the influence of such groups can increase.
Instead, the report deals with everything from the conditions experienced by women in refugee camps to the ways in which women develop strength and active influence.
European works councils must be made into a genuine forum for social democracy, giving employees the power of action they need to influence the strategy choices of their employers.
We were there as observers, but it is to be hoped that we were also able to influence the way the talks went - at least in some respect.
Firstly, it was upheld that, in order to exert any real influence over national customs, the scope of the directive must be as wide as possible.
In specific terms, this means promoting these states' cooperation and cohesion, also as regards the possibility of a free trade area which must be set up without external influence.
Many decisions which have spelled disaster for companies and for employment could have been avoided if employees had been able to influence these decisions.

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