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How to Influence People and Get what you Want

How to Influence People – The Psychology of Persuasion

How to influence people and get what you want

The Psychology of Persuasion

This is all about the art of changing hearts, minds and actions of people whom you move with, interact with every day and possibly want them to like you to get things done. What influences people to say yes?

Researchers have been studying this question for over 60 years and without a doubt there must be some science to how we are persuaded.

Persuasion precedes decision-making – so you can imagine how this psychology can be put to maximum use in business as well.

Everyone is being sold to on a daily basis – at the grocery store checkout line, through ads on the radio, television, and in magazines.

What many people do not realize is that the process of selling– whether a produt or  a concept is deeply rooted in an understanding of human psychology.

Okay, lets cruise through the 6 universal factors that guide our decision making:

how to influence people

  1. Reciprocity – the obligation to give back what you have received from others. Essentially people repay a kindness with a kindness. The giving of mint increased a waiter’s tip by 3%. Two mints equal an increase in 14% in the tip left.
  2. Scarcity – People want more of those things there are less of. When British Airways announced that they would no longer be running the twice-daily route from London to New York concord flight because it had become uneconomical, sales the very next day took off.
  3. Authority – People will follow the lead of credible and knowledgeable experts. Physioyherapists are able to persuade most of their patients to comply with programmes if they display their medical diplomas on the wall of their offices. This is why sales people always mention various awards that their company or product has won, as people are more inclined to trust an expert in their field.
  4. Consistency – Activated by looking for and asking for small initial commitments that can be made. When seeking to influence this principle, the influencer looks for voluntary, active and public commitments and gets those in writing.
  5. Liking – People prefer to say yes to those they like. But what causes a person to like another? In a series of studies carried out at two business schools, a group of MBA students were told to adopt the “Time is Money” idea in a meeting and get straight down to business. In this group 55% were able to come to an agreement with other persons. The second group were told, before you begin negotiations, exchange some personal information, identify a similarity you share in common and then begin negotiations. In this group 90% were able to reach successful and agreeable outcomes.
  6. Consensus – People will look to the actions of others to determine their own. Hotels often place small cards in hotel bathrooms to persuade guests to reuse towels. Most do this by informing the guests of the benefits the reuse can have on the environemnt. This strategy leads to 30% compliance. When the information on the card said ” 75% of our guests reuse their towels, so please do so as well”, the compliance level was up by 33%.

These are scientifically validated principles of persuasion that provide for small, practical and often costless changes that can lead to big differences in your ability to influence and persuade others in an entirely ethical way. What are you waiting for?

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