We persuade people around us all the time. Whether it is asking for help in a particular project or getting information from someone or marketing an idea or project, persuasion happens all the time.
But how many times are we able to get the desired result? If the answer is – not too many times, then we need to analyze our persuasion tactics. Persuading someone is not an easy feat to achieve. However, there are some simple strategies that can assist in effective persuasion and this goes a long way in getting the desired results.
Communication and persuasion are inseparable. When you persuade you are essentially communication with the person. Therefore, effective communication will eventually result in effective persuasion.
Let us look at some strategies for effective persuasion:
Be Genuine – For any communication to be effective it is important that the sender comes across as a genuine person. This becomes even more critical in persuasion, since trust is critical for persuasion. Do not provide any misleading or false information.
Be Direct – It is always a good idea to spell out exactly what you want the other person to do instead of beating around the bush. Being direct saves time and results in prompt action. Also being to the point is critical. If you provide too much unnecessary information, the important points might get diluted or lost.
Use the Golden Words – Any communication becomes more effective, if it is courteous. Again persuasion requires one to be more courteous, since you are persuading someone to do something that they would not normally do. Words like “please”, “thank you” and “sorry” go a long way building rapport and creating a congenial environment. Even if the work is a part of someone’s job description, using polite words does no harm.
Be Empathetic – Understand your audience before trying to persuade the. Know what are the positive triggers for them, understand their value system and analyze whether a direct or indirect approach of communication will click with them. Be empathetic, if the job requires extra effort from them or will cause inconvenience to them, apologize for it and offer to help in any way you can. Designing your message keeping the audience in mind will yield better results.
Outline Benefits – If the action is going to result in benefits for the other person it is important to clearly state these benefits. Tell them what’s in it for them. This will prompt immediate action.
Provide Facts – Nothing convinces better and faster than factual data. Provide all required facts and data and ensure that all the data is accurate.
Outline Action Plan – Persuasion will not be very effective if a clear plan of action is not outlined. You need to state clearly as to what action needs to be taken as a result of the communication. Otherwise, even though the person may be convinced he will not know how to go about fulfilling your request.
Keeping these simple things in mind will result in effective communication.
The BizComm Program of Strengthscape addresses Persuasion and many other aspects of Business Communication.