Have you ever arrived at a meeting with a firm idea of what you wanted, only to leave with a completely different point of view in mind? Chances are you’ve been in the company of a master persuader, those who are able to bend you to their will, often against your better judgment. This month’s tips reveal how you too can perfect this vital business skill. Read now…
Recent research by Robert Cialdini shows that there’s a much-overlooked dimension when it comes to persuasion; what goes on in the moments before we speak. Before and during the message delivery can have a significant effect on the outcome. By carefully tailoring images, words, and context, you can temporarily alter not just what that person thinks, but also who they are in that specific moment. It’s the art of pre-suasion, and the statistics speak for themselves.
What exactly do you want, and why? If you can’t articulate this to yourself, you’re unlikely to persuade anyone else. Your message should be able to describe what you want, why you want it, and reasons for why it’s a good idea. The more specific you can be, the better.
Be confident, have passion, and have faith. If you want people to back you, invest in you, trust you, they need to feel confident that you can deliver. Once you’ve summoned conviction, make sure you can back it up with evidence.
Around 40% of a person’s response to an idea is based on whether they feel a connection to whoever is putting forward the suggestion. This doesn’t mean being likeable – it’s about making a connection with who you’re talking to. If they feel you’re both like them, and that you like them, they’re more inclined to listen (Erickson, 2005).
Describing ‘what’s in it for them’ can certainly be a powerful motivator. But even more powerful, is what they stand to lose if they don’t agree to your plan. Research shows that losing something you already possess is more likely to motivate people to act, than the idea of gaining the very same thing.
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