Michelle Bowden Australian keynote speaker at MDRT 2022 teaches how to be more persuasive and hear the word yes more often in your life.

How persuasive are you when it counts?

Article summary: How persuasive are you when it counts? Discover 4 types to influence in any role. Lead, collaborate, or parent with ease. Unlock your persuasive power!

Photo of people sitting on a park bench looking annoyed at each other.

You know it’s the little things that can drive us crazy.

 

I know that there are some very serious issues in the world to think about: climate change, wars, human slavery to name just a few. I’m a persuasion expert and despite all the BIG issues in the world, often people ask me for help with what seems (by comparison) like the silliest of matters.

 

For example:

“My kids won’t pick up the dog poop in the yard.”

“My partner leaves their clothes all over our small ensuite bathroom.”

“My child won’t clean their room.”

“The team won’t put their dirty dishes in the dishwasher.”

“My child won’t stop gaming/do their homework.”

“My partner plays loud cricket on the TV both days of the weekend and I can’t stand it droning on!”

“My partner never unpacks a dishwasher.”

“My colleague never submits their data on time.”

Cover of best selling book Don't Sweat the Small Stuff

Do you see what I mean? These are seemingly small things and when Dr Richard Carlson said, “Don’t sweat the small stuff” in his best-selling book of the same name he was talking about these kinds of matters. Really they are exactly what was meant by “small stuff”.

But guess what? Get people talking about these things and you can physically see a change in their bodies. What might be a silly matter to you is seriously annoying for them. They tense up, their faces turn pink, and they sigh with exasperation.

 

They also often say to me, “what’s wrong with my [insert annoying person here]! (partner/child/boss/colleague/family member). “Can’t they just see how frustrated I am and fix it? Why are they so stubborn?” “Why won’t they listen to me?”

 

These small matters can turn from a mole hill (nit picking and a bit of mild nagging) into a mountain (“if they loved me, they’d change”). What starts as a seemingly insignificant annoyance irritates you just enough so that it can build and build and build to a much bigger problem.

Photo of man looking very frustrated in the article How persuasive are you written by female keynote speaker Michelle Bowden

So, let me ask you, how persuasive are you?  Have you ever even thought about your persuasiveness in life? Do people listen when you speak? Do you often get your own way? Would you know how to deal with all those small matters listed above? Would you be successful every time? Or would you find yourself being aggressive or passive about the matters and letting them ruin your relationships?

 

We persuade every day …. I counted 65 times!

Every day we are faced with opportunities to persuade the people around us. For a bit of fun, I spent a day counting the persuasion moments I observed, and it totalled 65. Some of the persuasion moments were obvious like selling my keynote speech to a client or getting someone to agree to new terms in our business agreement.  Other moments were less obvious: I watched the gym instructor asking people to move forward in a pump class to make space for others, I asked my daughter to pick up her bath towel from her bedroom floor and hang it up, I saw the café owner persuade someone to try low carb milk in their coffee, I persuaded my team member to complete a task earlier than initially requested, I persuaded my husband to take me out to dinner, I persuaded one of my daughters to walk the dogs after work).  And yes, you read that right – I was aware of 65 moments of persuasion in just that one day – some were straightforward and easy, others more stressful and I needed to be more alert and masterful.

 

In all these little moments and interactions, it’s persuasiveness that you need to help the other person move through stubbornness to acceptance.

 

Our persuasiveness is limited by our communication style

When the stakes are high and it’s important that our stakeholder listens and takes the action that we require it is essential that we are persuasive. Our unique persuasion style and personality traits ensure that some people are easier for us to persuade than others. If you’ve ever felt unsure of the most effective way to persuade someone, or you just want to hear the word “yes” more often in your life, one thing is for sure, you need to develop your ability persuade in any situation, not just the easy situations.

 

 

Photo of two letters from scrabble to visually represent the point that in all companies there is a GAP in the way people persuade. Michelle Bowden CSP can help you fill that gap.

There is currently a GAP in your persuasiveness – there has to be!

I spent 2 decades researching thousands and thousands of people across the globe and what we know is that there are four persuasive types. To make it easy for you to remember the types and their key characteristics and weaknesses I’ve named them after birds. The four types are: The Wise Owl, The Commanding Eagle, the Friendly Budgie, and the Captivating Peacock.

Persuasion Smart Profile logo - brought to you by Michelle Bowden the author of How to Present: the skills you need to get what you want (Wiley)

We all tend to have a primary, secondary type – these are our persuasive strengths. And we all also have a least preferred type (or weakness). Because we nearly all have a least preferred type, that means there’s a GAP in your persuasiveness and if you fill that gap you’ll hear the word ‘yes’ more often!

 

And why should you care to investigate the GAP in your persuasiveness?

We all are all persuaded by different things. Some people won’t be persuaded by you unless your argument is rational, logical, and backed by verifiable facts and research. Other people really care about the credibility of the messenger. They need to know that you have the runs on the board and the vibe that you really know what you are talking about. They need to know you are someone they can trust because you are an authority in your field. Then there are people who need to know that you care about them; they need to feel a strong emotional connection to you before they are open to being persuaded by you. And finally, there are people who need to sense your passion and enthusiasm before they will be persuaded by you. They need to be swept up in your excitement.

 

 

Case Study

I’ll give you an example. My husband Ian is a Wise Owl. The following behaviours are consistent with the Wise Owl:

– Provides sound arguments based on evidence and thorough analysis.

– Conducts thorough research.

– Analyses the data before drawing conclusions.

– Demonstrates good judgement through deep understanding of the argument.

– Uses a rational, well-structured flow for outlining their argument.

– Demonstrates composure and calmness in the face of antagonism.

– Assumes that everyone will be as interested in the analysis as they are.

Photo of Michelle and Ian Bowden on the occasion of their 25th wedding anniversary

When my husband aims to persuade people around him, he’s like a wise old wizard! People often are impressed by his knowledge and ability to articulate his argument clearly and calmly and in a well-structured way. He’s often read more than everyone else about the matter, and sees both sides of an argument. He’s very difficult to argue with for this reason! 

 

However, when he is aiming to persuade a Captivating Peacock – someone who values an expressive, animated communication style with memorable, entertaining, and inspiring stories he struggles to persuade. They find him boring, too calm, unemotional, unconvincing. I’m a Peacock and we’ve been happily married for a long time – but that’s a story for another day!

 

The point?

You’re not trying to persuade yourself! It’s important to be able to build your strengths in all four persuasive types so that you can naturally pull out the right approach depending on who you are persuading.  Do what you can to be as persuasive as possible in all four approaches and watch yourself become more and more persuasive. Success!

 

How can you improve your persuasiveness in life?

May I suggest you work on one little thing at a time. Every day build a new habit into your communication tool kit.

 

My new book, How to Persuade: the skills you need to get what you want (Wiley) is the latest research into persuasion. It’s PACKED full of all the actions you can adopt in your communications skills tool kit to slowly but surely be as persuasive as possible all the time.

 

Whether you are a people leader who needs to persuade your team to love their roles and be engaged and productive, or you’re an entrepreneur who needs to persuade your investors or clients to buy, or a parent who needs to persuade your child, this book will show you how to persuade even the most stubborn in your life. 

Happy persuading!

Photo of a stack of books called How to Persuade: the skills you need to get what you want (Wiley) written by Michelle Bowden

The point?

You’re not trying to persuade yourself! It’s important to be able to build your strengths in all four persuasive types so that you can naturally pull out the right approach depending on who you are persuading.  Do what you can to be as persuasive as possible in all four approaches and watch yourself become more and more persuasive. Success!

How can you improve your persuasiveness in life?

 

My new book, How to Persuade: the skills you need to get what you want (Wiley) is the latest research into persuasion. It’s PACKED full of all the actions you can adopt in your communications skills tool kit to slowly but surely be as persuasive as possible all the time.

 

Whether you are a people leader who needs to persuade your team to love their roles and be engaged and productive, or you’re an entrepreneur who needs to persuade your investors or clients to buy, or a parent who needs to persuade your child, this book will show you how to persuade even the most stubborn in your life. 

 

Happy persuading!

"Everything you want, and need is on the other side of persuasion. This book takes you through the latest thinking on influence and persuasion and gives you all the completely achievable step-by-step actions to make yourself more instantly persuasive."
Alec Gardner
Managing Partner, Australia & New Zealand, AlphaZetta
Group photos from decades of Presentation Skills Training Sydney Melbourne and Brisbane with Michelle Bowden presentation skills trainer

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One presentation skills training course once is all you need. Become a more confident, engaging and persuasive business presenter & stay true to your natural style! We promise no hand holding, crying or videoing!

©2024 MICHELLE BOWDEN is an authority on persuasive presenting in business. She’s run her Persuasive Presentation Skills Masterclass over 995 times for more than 13,000 people over the past 25 years and her name is a synonym for ‘presentation skills’ in Australia.

Michelle is a multi-million-dollar pitch coach to her client list that reads like a who’s who of international business: banking and finance, IT, pharmaceutical, retail, telecommunications plus many more. Michelle is the creator of the Persuasion Smart Profile®, a world-first psychological assessment tool that reports on your persuasive strengths and weaknesses at work, the best-selling internationally published author of How to Present: the ultimate guide to presenting live and online (Wiley) and her new book is called How to Persuade: the skills you need to get what you want (Wiley)3

Michelle Bowden CSP delights the crowd in her closing keynote: Corporate Presentation Skills Training with LGFP QLD!

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