I delivered a talk to a group of business owners on the topic of “How to use Influence to Grow and Retain Customers.” It struck me following the talk that influence is one of, if not the most powerful technique in building relationships. Just look at Apple… Who ever thought they needed an iPod or iPad? We were influenced into believing our lives would improve as a result of having these devices. The verdict is still out on whether this is truly the case.
I wanted to share three of the key elements of influence we discussed as I think it applies to everyone who needs to influence others… Which is everyone at one point or another.
1. Make those you are trying to influence feel unique and special. Talk about what they want to talk about, offer provocative questions and information that will show you have considered their views, and that will have them give further thought to their ideas.
2. Communicate in different ways using different platforms. Email is the number one communication tool for many, but try mixing it up. Different people are receptive to communications in different ways. Try texting a message to your parents for examples and you will be lucky if they no how to read the text much the less respond.
3. Provide advice and information. The internet has helped everyone become educated in virtually all areas (just what did we do before the intranet anyway?). When communicating be proactive and presume the other person understands something about that which you are speaking. Be prepare to answer questions and provide further explanation, otherwise the listener will quickly dismiss you as assuming they are stupid (not a great ice breaker!).
Try incorporating these three tips into your next discussion and watch how quickly your ability to influence and persuade others improves.
© Shawn Casemore 2012. All rights reserved.