Persuading someone to do something is a vital skill in everyday life. Whether you’re asking your boss for a raise or your significant other to pick up their socks, it’s important that you know how to get what you want—and quickly. I think we can agree that persuading anyone (or anything) is easier said than done, but with these five easy-to-use tips for persuasion, your success rate will skyrocket:
Choose Your Moment.
Your best bet is to choose a time when the person you are trying to persuade is relaxed and focused, so that they can give your argument or idea their full attention. If it’s not a good time for them, then it won’t be a good time for you either.
You should also avoid trying to persuade someone when they are stressed out or otherwise distracted. These are not ideal conditions for making decisions that require careful consideration, which is what persuasion requires.
Don’t try to persuade someone who is angry or upset about something else; this will make them less likely to listen and more likely to lash out at you—both of which will make them less receptive than if they were feeling calm and collected.
Lead with a Compliment.
You’ve heard the saying “say something nice, and then ask for what you want” before, but that’s not exactly how it works. When it comes to flattery, there are a few rules of thumb you should keep in mind:
- Be sincere. If you’re going to compliment someone, make sure it’s genuine and not just a way for you to get something out of them. Even if they don’t follow through on whatever favor/request/thingy is at hand, they will remember being flattered by your attention—and who doesn’t like feeling appreciated?
- Don’t overdo it. Don’t go overboard with praise or else people will start thinking that maybe there really isn’t anything special about them after all (spoiler alert: there is). In other words: don’t be fakey!
Break It Down Into Smaller Steps.
This is the most common persuasive technique, and it’s also the easiest to implement. Breaking tasks down into smaller steps makes them seem more manageable and easier to get done. It’s like when you were a child and your mother would ask you to clean up your room; she used this technique on purpose because she knew how much faster it would be for you to do it if you didn’t have to think about all of the individual pieces of clutter in front of you.
So next time someone asks if they can borrow $100,000 or asks for a big favor that seems overwhelming at first glance, break it down into smaller steps so they see how easy it will actually be (e.g., “I need some money today—can I borrow $20? Then once I get back from work tomorrow morning we can figure out what else is needed.”).
Use A Reinforcement Loop.
If you’re trying to convince someone of something, a reinforcement loop is the most effective way to do it. A reinforcement loop is a simple three-step process:
- Start with a basic idea or idea you want to sell. (This can be anything from “I want my boss to give me a raise” or “I want my neighbor’s dog to stop barking.”)
- Find ways that other people have already agreed with the basic idea in one form or another, and then use those as examples for why this person should agree with you too (i.e., how your boss might say yes if his favorite team wins; how your neighbor might shut up if she thinks her dog is annoying).
- Repeat steps 1 & 2 until they believe what you believe (and also until they do what you want them to do).
Show Them How To Win.
Now, I’m not saying you should take a hard line with your boss and tell her that if she doesn’t let you leave work early today, she’s going to lose her best employee. But you can use some of the same techniques to show how much better off everyone will be if they do what you want them to do.
- Show them how to win. If there is one thing humans love more than anything else in life (besides sex), it’s winning. So frame the situation so that your boss or loved one sees how this particular choice will lead to victory for everyone involved—including themselves! You can also show them how not doing what you ask might lead them down a path where they lose out on something even better than what they’re asking for now: their pride and integrity, maybe? How about just a good night’s sleep? Take your pick!
If You Want To Persuade Anyone To Do Anything, These Five Tips Can Help You Succeed
If you want to persuade anyone to do anything, these five tips can help you succeed.
- Time your request properly
- Compliment them first
- Break things down into smaller steps
- Use reinforcement loops as often as possible
- Show them how they can win
Persuasion is a skill that anyone can learn. The best way to get better at it is by practicing and learning from failure. But no matter what your level of experience, these five tactics will help you persuade anyone to do anything.
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Payomatix Technologies Pvt. Ltd.
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