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Debbie Mayo-Smith international inspirational motivational how-to speaker technology, time management, improving business performance
Motivational Speakers, Sales, Marketing, Time Management, Productivity, Technology, Tips

How To Influence Anyone About Anything

The best way to influence anyone else is by looking at three simple issues:

  1. What's in it for them?
  2. How can I provide what's in it for them and still obtain what I need?
  3. How to I demonstrate that?

The people in baggage claim aren’t about to act any faster or with any more ingenuity to find your lost luggage if you scream at them. (And, in fact, they may arrange never to find your luggage.) But they will become quite involved if you tell them that you need their advice on how you can help them best track it down, and that you've heard their airline is the best in the business at helping in this situation.

The baggage clerk isn't receiving anything tangible from you. But what's in it for the clerk is someone offering to help, someone who's not threatening and swearing, and someone who compliments their organisation.

  1. What's in it for them? People take the initiative to change (motivation instead of mere movement) if their rational self-interest is served. That self-interest may be tangible improvement, avoidance of risk or an unpleasant situation, recognition of their skills and achievements, inclusion, increased latitude of action, and a myriad of other factors. Put yourself in their shoes, whether prospects, bosses, subordinates, peers, family members, or strangers. Don't start a sentence with, "What I need," but rather with, "You may be interested in."
  2. How can I provide what's in it for them and still obtain what I need? Be willing to sacrifice small desires in order to safeguard your key "musts." If I need someone to help set up a room before my arrival, I may offer to share credit for the workshop with them, publicly thank them, and will gladly get them the materials to be distributed a week earlier than I otherwise would have. But they must have the room set up a full hour before the workshop starts, and that's not negotiable. Provide options: You can set up the room the night prior, or at least an hour before start time, and you can use any of three different configurations. Make it as flexible as possible while still meeting your "musts."
  3. How do I demonstrate that? Be open. Be candid. Don't trick someone and don't have lame excuses. Ask the other person for their advice or if they have a better suggestion (which they just might). Don't be demanding and, above all, be patient, which might seem counterintuitive, but which says to the other person, "This isn't life or death, and I'm not desperate."

    Threats of force and retribution are usually hollow and can generate pyrrhic victories (some waiters really will spit in your drink if you're rude about their service-who wins that one?). Put yourself in the other person's shoes and ask how you would be influenced.
  4. I once actually persuaded the flight crew of a United Airlines plane delayed by storms for four hours to reverse their decision not to fly to Providence at two in the morning, since it was easier for them to go home. They listened to me, told everyone to sit tight, had the luggage reloaded, and off we went. People were astounded. I simply reminded the crew that they would have almost the entire next day off if they went to Providence at that hour, but they'd be flying bleary-eyed in a few hours if they stayed in Chicago.

    Article Copyright © Alan Weiss. Reprinted with permission http://www.summitconsulting.com

Debbie Mayo-Smith called the Queen of Productivity is an International Motivational Business Speaker and best selling author! (http://www.successis.co.nz) Let Debbie help you with easy practical ways to improve your business profitability, personal productivity and work life balance. Debbie lives in NZ and travels the world speaking, writing and training. Why not enrol for our free newsletter?


This article is copyright to Debbie Mayo-Smith & SuccessIS. You may use it for your newsletter, website or as an article. It can be reproduced - but in its entirety and with inclusion of Debbie Mayo-Smith as the author and the weblink www.successis.co.nz


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