30 May 20 things every School Business Manager needs to know when persuading at work
(from Michelle Bowden’s presentation for SBMA at Jupiters Casino in May 2016)
- We persuade and influence our family members, friends, clients, colleagues and managers every day of our life. Our days and filled with negotiating, finding compromise, updating, advising, selling, influencing and persuading.
- Most people forget that we are actually influencing people all the time. So they treat their communication scenarios like informal conversations and don’t analyse their audience, prepare their message, and they definitely don’t take the time to rehearse. They are likely to ‘wing it’!
- Remember you cannot not influence.
- When asked about persuasion, 93.7% of respondents said they would like to be more persuasive. Sadly 92.8% of respondents said you are either persuasive or not and it’s simply too difficult to change what comes naturally. This is because people seem to have little real or concrete sense about what you need to do differently to actually be more persuasive. The good news is that there are plenty of things you can do to be more persuasive and you can start right now!
- Expert communicators analyse their stakeholder, prepare their messages and even rehearse the delivery so they increase their chances of success. Expert communicators get into their stakeholder’s shoes and build strong rapport so they can present meaningful, needs based solutions. Expert communicators know how to design, persuasive, powerful, memorable messages and as a result expert communicators hear the word ‘yes’ more often in their life. In today’s business industry, CRM solutions build a profitable relationship by maximizing the effectiveness of customer interactions. If you’re interested to know more about CRM platform, visit https://www.salesforce.com/products/quote-to-cash/overview/
- You can communicate with stakeholders from three potential ‘positions’. 1st position is where you are in your own shoes – completely self indulgent and all you care about is yourself. 2nd position is where you are completely and utterly in your stakeholder’s shoes. 3rd Position is the helicopter view. From up in 3rd Position you can see your needs (1st Position) and you can see their needs (2nd Position) so from 3rd Position you can make some very good decisions about what is best for you and what is best for your stakeholder. Spend more time in 2nd and 3rd position than you currently do!
- Rapport is all about a relationship or connection with your stakeholders. It’s easier to build rapport with people who are like you.
- You can’t ask for anything unless you are in rapport – well you can ask but they’ll probably say “no”!
- Pacing is being as ‘like’ the other party as possible without mimicking them. You build rapport though matching, mirroring (pacing) people’s body language, eye contact, voice, language, interests, dress and attitudes (to name just a few areas).
- The way that you pace someone’s attitude is with universals and truisms. Universals and truisms are statements that reflect back to the other party what they already know to be true. We call them ‘pacing statements’ because universals and truisms ‘pace’ your stakeholder’s attitudes.
- Your leading statement is your key message, it’s often contentious and it must be reasonable. Your leading statement is the thing you are asking your stakeholder for. You don’t have permission to lead an audience without first pacing them.
- The number of pacing statements that you need to use to be a master of influence is directly related to your existing level of rapport. Note that you can be in (or out) rapport using two separate criteria: 1. Personally; 2. Contextually. If rapport is non-existent using either criteria you need at least 3 pacing statements before you lead.
- The filter that determines our propensity to accept information on face value or not is called the Matcher/Mismatcher filter. People with a matching preference are those who look for what is true and correct, for what matches what they know to be true. People with a mismatching preference look for what is different to what they know to be true – where their reality is different to the presenter’s reality.
- To meet the needs of your stakeholder, avoid absolutes in your pacing statements such as “never”, “all”, “everyone”, “must”, “should” and use CABS instead: “or not”, “many”, “most”, “some”, “few”.
- Remember when it comes to persuasion, “No” is just feedback that you didn’t pace enough or properly. “Yes” is feedback that you did.
- It’s not about me, it’s all about the other party. It’s not about what you want to say or the way you want to say it, it’s not about how you want to stand, sit or move your body, and it’s definitely not about the PowerPoint slides you want to show. It’s all about your stakeholder and what they need to hear from you in order to understand your message and change their behaviour accordingly. Understand this and you’ll never be ‘nervous’ or lacking confidence as a communicator again.
- There are three main types of objections: content, personal and logistics. It’s best to manage most objections BEFORE they are raised. We manage objections with the POO technique. POO stands for: Pacing Out Objections.
- There are 5 steps to the POO technique: state the objection; say ‘and’, ‘so’ or pause and say nothing, then say ‘actually’ or ‘in fact’, lead to a solution, and finally use the clever word ‘because’ with a meaningful reason.
- Be careful of saying ‘But’, ‘However’, ‘Alternatively’, ‘Although’ because they all negate what you have just said and activate the fight/flight response in the stakeholder and incite them to fight you! Choose to say “and”, “so”, or just pause and say nothing.
- As you can’t always foresee every single objection that could be raised, you can also use the POO technique for managing objections when they are raised.
I know you know this, it’s not rocket science, so take the time to plan your meetings in advance, analyse your performance at the conclusion of every meeting and continuously strive to be an expert communicator who masters the craft of persuasive communication.
And do you even know how persuasive you are at work? Take the Persuasion Relative Strength Indicator and find out before our conference!
How persuasive are you? Do people listen when you speak? Do you often get your own way?
We persuade every day….
Every day we are faced with opportunities to influence those around us in the workplace. Some occasions, such as a formal presentation are obvious opportunities to persuade. Other opportunities are less obvious, for example unplanned meetings, impromptu presentations with parents or colleagues, an informal conversation with a stakeholder, a luncheon with a possible referrer, a professional development event that you have decided to attend at the last minute. Our persuasiveness is limited by our communication style and often we don’t take full advantage of the opportunities that present.
You can check yourself….
Michelle Bowden Enterprises has launched an exciting new psychometric tool called the Persuasion Relative Strength Indicator (PRSI) for identifying the strengths and weaknesses in your persuasive communication style. Complete the tool and you will see how persuasion is made up of a set of behaviours that are achievable for everyone. I have made this ground-breaking psychometric indicator available for you at no cost.
To complete the PRSI please click on the following link:
Why complete the PRSI?
It’s not compulsory that you complete this 100% confidential PRSI. If you do decide to participate, and you follow the instructions clearly and answer as your WORK SELF, you’ll gain better understanding of yourself.
It’s a great opportunity for you to have the chance to learn a bit more about yourself and your colleagues and I would encourage you to have a go!
To complete the PRSI please click on the following link. https://www.forepsyte.com/studies/pers
Is this just for us? Can anyone else complete the PRSI?
Yes, by all means, you are welcome to pass the link to family and friends who may also like to learn more about their persuasiveness at work – just make sure YOU complete the indicator first!
Remember the gift of persuasion is the gift of ‘yes’, and the gift of ‘yes’ is the gift of success, the gift of success is the gift of a happy life. That’s what I wish for you. Happy persuading. Mx
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