Persuasion isn’t just the last great novel by Jane Austen, it’s a tool that plays a vital role in achieving success.
Some people are naturally persuasive and are easily able to steer a conversation their way to secure a promotion or pay rise or convince a busy manager that their new initiative is a winner. Others find convincing colleagues and managers more difficult.
Find out how you persuade others by taking our five question quiz. You find out more about persuasion by completing the tutorial below.
Select one answer for each question to find out your preferred style
There are a number of tactics and techniques you can employ that will help and increase your influence.
Click on the 10 sections below to find out more
Carefully describing or explaining something in such a way that influences how the recipient interprets the information being given is known as ‘framing’.
Framing has three core elements:
When you use ‘we’, everyone is included, the whole team are part of your vision, it’s not just focused on you. No one is left out.
If you speak confidently, clearly and concisely, people are more likely to listen to you and to take what you have to say seriously. They will then be more likely to agree with you. Practise your message so that you are sure of what you are going to say.
What’s in it for me (WIIFM) – One way of persuading your boss or influencing a big decision is to focus on how a proposal will benefit the other party specifically. What advantages will your new process have?, what cost benefits will buying new equipment have? etc…If people see the positives they will be more inclined to agree.
Inject an urgency into what you are proposing – is there a time constraint to the offer? Is an item you require in limited supply? Using the language of urgency may influence a decision in your favour.
The ‘But you are free’ (BYAF) technique can double the chances of someone saying ‘yes’ to your request. Simply remind the people you’re talking to that they are free to make a decision on the subject you’re discussing and they will be more disposed to agree with you.
Using the ‘herd effect’ to point out that a particular service, strategy or tool is being used by a lot of people in your industry or profession or by direct competitors can seal the deal in your favour.
You may be looking for agreement for a big project. By starting small and getting someone to agree to a smaller aspect first, you are likely to get them to agree to the bigger project in the long run.
Your proposal, whatever it may be, will carry more weight if it is backed up by evidence and data. Evidence could be from academic studies, in-house data, good industry practice, pilot schemes or online surveys. If an argument is supported, it is much harder to refute!
You may have worked out every detail, practised what you are going to say and produced a fantastic presentation, but if your body language doesn’t back up your claims, it will undermine the credibility of the whole thing! Consider these points: