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The Art of Persuasion: 20 Skills That Make Everyone Agree with What You Say

The Art of Persuasion: 20 Skills That Make Everyone Agree with What You Say

Are you a leader, entrepreneur, marketer, business executive, administrator etc. as long as you relate with people, especially a boss/subordinate kind of relationship, you should have the vital skills to persuade. Persuasion in this context does not mean coercion rather it is the ability of a person to get others to willingly and enthusiastically carryout specific tasks in the manner deemed by the instructor for the attainment of specific goals and objectives.

The problem with most people is their inability to grasp the art of persuasion and unwillingness to acquire the vital skills needed to successfully persuade people. Being persuasive doesn’t warrant you to manipulate or pressure other people; it’s all about convincing. But for you so successfully persuade people to enthusiastically and willingly follow a course of action or believe in your ideas, these skills should be found in you;

Everything starts with your planning skills

Your ability to persuade people successfully every time is dependent on preparation. Nothing is achieved without planning. The most important thing is to have adequate information of the people and situations around you. Adequate preparation allows for effective persuasion.

Jeff Haden says ‘instead of jumping right to the end of your argument, start with statements or premises you know your audience will agree with. Build a foundation for further agreement. Remember, a body in motion tends to remain in motion, and that also applies to a head nodding in agreement’.[1]

Story Telling Skills

Telling stories is quite fascinating when you trying to make a point. Stories have the power to persuade people and influence them. People seem to pay attention differently when hearing a narrative or illustration as opposed to presenting out facts and figures.

By demonstrating your idea or strategy to people through stories, they can better understand you. Martin Zwilling says ‘stories are often more convincing than simple statements of fact. If you can integrate the receiver directly into the story, the potential impact is even greater.[2]

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Motivational Skills

Persuasion has a significant relationship with motivation. You can’t persuade people without knowing the art of motivation. Getting people motivated is a tough task because it is dependent on personality; the factors that can motivate an individual may be different from the ones that motivate another.

Understanding what causes a person t o become motivated – and stay that way – can help with making sure people are the most productive that they can be.[3] Hence in order to successfully persuade people, one should be able to know what it takes to motivate.

Problem Solving Skill

In our contemporary world where there are lots of socio-economic and political issues, people with problem solving skill are highly respected and have the capacity to persuade people to believe on their ideas.

People are constantly looking for problem solvers.[4] Once you have the ability to dissect problems and come up with the best alternatives that solved a given problem, people will naturally approach you and bow to your persuasive power.

Strategic Thinking Skill

Have you ever thought of the great inventors and wealthy entrepreneurs in the world today, they are great thinkers. This is why they have been able to make enormous impact on people. Warren Buffett is considered by some to be one of the most successful investors in the world; Mark Zuckerberg is the chairman, chief executive officer, and co-founder of Facebook; while founded the world’s largest software business, Microsoft. These men are great today because they are strategic thinkers. With this skill, they can easily persuade people to adopt their ideas.

Confidence

Confidence is a pre-requisite for persuasion. No one will ever regard your ideas, views and opinion if they perceive you lack self-confidence. If you really believe in yourself and what you do, you will always be able to persuade others to do what’s right for them, while getting what you want in return.

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Listening Skills

Influential people are attentive listeners. They tend to give attention to every complaint and discussion which make people naturally adore them. Have you ever asked yourself why most people usually say ‘thank you for your listening ears’? They feel happy that someone cared to listen to their problems. By gaining their trust, you can easily influence them.

Charisma

Charisma is about what you say and do as opposed to who you really are as a person.[5] Your subconscious, social cues, physical expression, and the way you treat others all play a part in developing your charisma.

Charisma is a great influencer. When people naturally like you because of how you talk, your composure, calm personality, attitude etc., you can have a big influence on them.

Rapport Skill

Rapport skill are crucial for developing mutual trust and friendship with someone or group of individuals. Once you have established a good interpersonal relationship with someone or group of people, this gives you the opportunity rapport with them and share some ideas and values.

Jason Nazar says ‘by mirroring and matching others habitual behaviors (body language, cadence, language patterns, etc.) you can build a sense of rapport where people feel more comfortable with you and become more open to your suggestions.[6]

Loyalty

You will hear people often say ‘respect is earned rather than commanded’. This is because people actually expect those they revere to first of all conduct themselves in an orderly manner. You have to be loyal to be able to draw the attention of others you want to influence.

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Research skill

A person desiring to have the power to persuade must be a good researcher in order to communicate accurately and authoritatively on a subject. By having a research skill, you will be able to explore unlimited knowledgeable about the points, ideas and views you want to convey. Your level of vast knowledge gives you an added advantage in persuading others to believe in your ideas.

Human Relations Skill

Human relations skill is critical to persuasion. The classic management theorists failed partly because the neglected the human relations approach to employees’ management. To be a powerful persuader, you should be able to understand a person’s pain and problems.

Persuasive people are likable and influential because they put the needs of others above themselves.[7] When you genuinely try to understand another person’s background and motivation, you’ll be able to more effectively persuade him or her.

Communication Skill

Communication is very essential when you want to successfully persuade someone or group of people. It should be a two way communication where feedback is encouraged. The art of persuasion rest lies with interaction and encouraging responses to ascertain the state of mind, motives and views of the people you want to powerfully persuade to follow a particular course of action.

Language Skill

As a result of globalization, we tend to meet people from different nations with different language, value system, norms and culture. One way of establishing interpersonal relationship with them is to understand and speak their languages. Constant communication with them will give you the opportunity to share your ideas and influence their opinions.

Mentoring Skill

Mentors are usually respected by people especially prodigies. It is not difficult to have a mentoring skill. Just get people around and tell them about your belief, ideas and goals. They will be naturally persuaded to join your course as long as you are successful at what you do.

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Critical Skill

Reasoning is a product of critical thinking. You don’t expect to persuade people when you do not know a thing about them. Critical thinking makes one an active learner rather than a passive recipient of information. Critical thinkers utilize observation, analysis, interpretation, reflection, evaluation, inference and explanation to make people believe them

Public Speaking Skill

To be successful in persuading people, one must master the art of public speaking. Most people will rather die than stand in the stage to address audience no matter the size. Public speaking requires confidence, planning, research, focus, story-telling, analyzing your audience and lots more. These and more make up public speaking skill. Hence to persuade successfully, public speaking skill is a pre-requisite.

Public Relations Skill

The art of persuasion requires public relations skill especially when one is a public figure. Here, the qualities one needs to successfully persuade people are flexibility, boldness and adaptability.

Collaborative Skill

Two or three people cannot work together except there is a desire to collaborate. Collaborative skills are the behaviors that help two or more people work together and function well in the process. You cannot influence people without actually knowing them. One way to know and understand people is to collaborate with them.

Creative Skill

You have to be super good in bringing something new into being or device a whole new exciting way of doing things to attract peoples’ attention. Creative thinkers are usually admired and people want to identify with them.

Organizations led by creative leaders have a higher success rate in innovation, employee engagement, change and renewal says Linda Naiman, founder of Creativity at Work.[8]

Decision Making Skill

Our daily life is full of decision making. Most of the aforementioned skills are dependent on decision making. For instance, selecting the group of individuals you want to persuade; picking the kind of message to communicate and selecting the strategies and techniques for convincing them are functions of decision making. Without this skill, one cannot achieve much when trying to persuade people.

Reference

More by this author

Dr. Jeff Shuford

President of Tech From Vets

The Art of Persuasion: 20 Skills That Make Everyone Agree with What You Say http://www.paisabazaar.com/credit-card/ 10 Tips To Get The Most Out Of Your Credit Cards 3 Things to Consider When Having A Mobile App Developed for Your Business

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Last Updated on May 7, 2019

How to Detect a Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing

How to Detect a Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing

Work in any competitive field long enough, and you’re bound to run into a wolf in sheep’s clothing. It’s a powerful image. A shepherd watches over his flock to protect them from harm. He’d chase away any predator that tried to make its way into the flock. A clever wolf wearing the skin of a sheep as a disguise can sneak by the vigilant shepherd and get into the herd undetected.

The story isn’t just a colorful description–it’s a warning to all of us to beware the wolf in sheep’s clothing. They may seem innocent, but they have ulterior motives. They’ll use different tactics to camouflage their intentions.

The person who is kind to you, but undercuts you when you aren’t around is a wolf in disguise. A wolf in sheep’s clothing might pick your brain for ideas and then pass them off as their own to get a promotion. They’re always looking out for themselves at the expense of everyone around them.

Wearing a Disguise Has Its Advantages

People don’t go out of their way to manipulate others unless they’re getting something out of it. Hiding their intentions gives wolves the chance to manipulate other people to advance their own agenda. They know that what they’re trying to do wouldn’t be popular, or it might cause struggle if they presented themselves honestly.

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    They’ll be able to do what they want with less interference if they put on an act. By the time people figure out their true motives, the wolf has what it wants.

    Signs That Someone Is a Wolf in Disguise

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        1. They live to take power instead of empowering others. A wolf uses people as stepping stones to get the things that they want. They don’t care what happens to anyone else.[1] A wolf at work might make you look bad during a presentation to make themselves look amazing in front of the boss.
        2. Wolves seem sweet on the outside, but they’ll show you their teeth. If wolves revealed their true identity, people wouldn’t associate with them. They develop a friendly or kind persona, but they can’t keep up the act 24/7. Eventually, they’ll reveal their aggressive tendencies. A wealthy person who likes to break the law may make sizable charitable donations to convince people that they are kind and thoughtful. These donations largely keep them out of trouble, but if someone calls them out, they destroy that person’s reputation to stifle the criticism.
        3. They manipulate through emotions to get what they want. Wolves know that they can get ahead by appealing to your emotions. They find out what you want and need, and they give you just enough to keep you quiet and compliant. Imagine that your boss is a wolf in sheep’s clothing, and you want to ask for a vacation. She might try to play on your guilt and feelings of insecurity to get you to skip vacation or take fewer days off.
        4. A wolf will charm you first. Wolves are experts at manipulating the people around them. They appear interested in whatever you’re doing, and you’ll get the impression that they care. After they get you where they want you, they do just enough to keep you on the hook. This is the coworker who may start out being your friend, but they end up dumping responsibility onto you. When they see that you are growing frustrated, they’ll surprise you with something to charm you some more. Then, they’ll continue to do whatever they want.
        5. Their stories are full of holes.  Calling a wolf out is the surest way to make them squirm. When this person tries to come up with a story, it won’t make much sense because they are improvising.[2] The classic example of this is the significant other that you suspect has cheated on you. When you ask them why they came home so late, they’ll either become upset with you, or they’ll make up a weak explanation.

        How to Spot a Wolf

          Know What’s Real So You Can Spot the Phony

          Do some homework so that you have as much of the story as possible before you work with them. Research how they respond in certain situations, or give them hypothetical problems to see how they respond.

          A job applicant might tell you that she’s always positive and thinks of herself as a team-player. That’s what every employer wants to hear. During the interview you ask applicants to work in groups to solve a problem to see how they handle the situation. The applicant “positive team-player” is bossy and negative. You’ve spotted the wolf.

          A wolf will tell you something that ultimately benefits them. Gather evidence that proves or disproves their position, and see what happens. Chances are, when you choose the side that supports their agenda, they’ll act like your best friend. If you disagree, they’ll become aggressive.

          Spotting a potential wolf–especially if you are one of the sheep–can present you with some challenges. If your gut tells you that a wolf is lurking among all the other sheep, pay attention, and make sure you take the next step.

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          Ask Questions, the More the Better

          There’s nothing wrong with asking questions to uncover the truth. The safety of everyone in your group is at risk. Since wolves often make up stories, you may be able to call them out when their tales lack details.

          When they state an opinion, ask “Why do you think that?” or “How do you know it’s like that?” They’ll have trouble coming up with enough information to pull off the lie.

          Since wolves are always pretending to be something they aren’t, they don’t usually have a clearly thought-out reason for what they say. In a debate, they won’t understand the root of an issue.

          They may also tell you what they think you want to hear, but when pressed for more information, they won’t have anything to add. Their knowledge is superficial. No matter how much you try to encourage discussion, they will not be able to carry on a conversation about the subject.

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          Wolves Are Everywhere

          As much as we want to believe that everyone has the best intentions, it isn’t always the case. Some people only do things to benefit themselves, and they don’t care who they hurt in the process.

          Wolves in sheep’s clothing can be found in almost every setting. You can’t get rid of them, but if you can spot them, you can avoid falling into their traps.

          Reference

          [1] Association of Biblical Counselors: Three Ways to Spot a Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing
          [2] Power of Positivity: Beware of a wolf in sheep’s clothing

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