#9a1: The role of strong connections in building influence.
The more general form of "leading without authority" is "creating change without authority". The ability to create change is enabled by influence. Influence is not a direct function of the count of your connections; rather, it comes from having strong connections.
A strong connection, in contrast to a weak connection, is someone with whom you have more than a passing level of rapport. But another important factor of a connection being strong is the level of their connectedness — are they also well-connected? Does their network span a wide area (functionally, socially, geographically, and ideally having little overlap with your direct network)? A wide, deep, and strong network is a key contributing factor to your influence.
(Note: I intentionally use the word "creating", in "creating change", over "enacting" — introducing a new policy and ratifying the change don't need to come from the individual who "creates" change.)