Man’s desire to be understood and to influence people in turn, is only second to his need for love. We want every one of our ideas to be accepted by others and we do our best to ensure that we present them well, so that people would accept and embrace them.
We are constantly listening to others and their ideas and are being influenced by them. Life is a constant interchange of ideas and influencing people is all about interchange of ideas.
There are times when we really need to influence people and get our ideas across; to achieve our goals. This does not mean that we have to be forcefully brutal about making people accept our ideas.
There is a lot of skill involved in being able to present your ideas in an acceptable manner. This is what leadership is all about – getting your ideas across, convincing and influencing people and getting them to do what you want.
Tips for the art of influencing others
1# Convince yourself
Before you begin to convince others, you need to be clear about your ideas. You have to have your facts and figures clear.
You need to be sure about what you want to say and be passionate about it. If some of these components are missing, you could easily fail to influence people. So make sure to prepare yourself even before you try to convince others.
2# Prepare adequately
Be conversant not only with all the facts but also with the pros and cons of the idea/argument that you plan to present. This would prepare you for any turns that a discussion may take and help you handle any negative points that are raised by others.
3# Go in with a positive outlook
Consider the people you want to influence as your well wishers. It is important to go into a discussion, especially if you want them to subscribe to your ideas with a positive approach.
Going into a discussion with a negative outlook not only conveys a negative perspective to your listener, but antagonizes them even before you had your chance to say your piece.
Tools for influencing people and negotiating skills
1# Good communication skills
Clarity of ideas, lucidity of presentation, politeness, firmness, openness and being reasonable are all skills that you would need.
Listen to what the other person is saying attentively. This conveys the impression of openness and fair play. Arrogance and brutal force never works if you want to influence people. You could just buy their attention for a little, but you can never have their heart.
2# Be passionate
You need to be passionate about your ideas. If you are not passionate nobody is going to buy what you say. You passion should be what influences others and helps them make up their mind. Very often, it shows people that what you are saying is something worth believing in.
3# Be in control
Being passionate is different from being emotional and out of control. You need to be in control of your emotions all the time. Never do or say anything rash, this would always work against you. When you are in control you come across as being balanced and rational in your approach. This is enough to convince people.
4# Save the secret weapon for the last
When you come to the negotiation table, always make sure that you do not exhaust all your points. Make your pivotal point your secret weapon. When you come across road blocks, this could save your day and get you that deal you are looking for.
Negotiating to win and influence
1# Never lose sight of the objective
Stick to your guns all the time. Never give up on your main objectives. You could always negotiate with the smaller ones.
You can settle for different ways of doing things but not the main idea itself. This will give others the feeling that they have a part to play in the negotiation.
2# Negotiate to win
Never go into a discussion with a compromise formula in mind. Always go in with an attitude of a winner and negotiate well to win.
When the other person sees your weakness, they would be ready to pounce on it. So make sure that you go in with every idea of winning every round.
3# Be flexible
In the course of discussion things may not go the way you expect them to. Be ready to change the way you are negotiating.
Have alternate arguments ready before you start your discussion. Influencing people is all about knowing when to change the course.
4# Accepting compromise
This should be your last resort. If your proposition is further from what the other party has in mind, there is no point in going ahead with your discussion. You need to device a compromise formula at such a stage. Use bargaining skills to get the best deal for yourself.
Win friends and Influence people responsibly
1# Win friends
When you negotiate or try to influence people, never do it with a motive to defeat people. Respect the opinion of others and give them their due.
This way you will have friends and followers who know that you care not only about yourself and your ideals but also about the people involved. You may have won friends and supporters for life.
2# Exert influence responsibly
When you exert influence over people do it responsibly and without a selfish motive. Exert influence to better the lives of others, while you have your goals met.
Always make sure there is certain amount of growth and learning that is passed on to your circle of influence. Develop leaders and make a better tomorrow.
Author Bio: Juan Koss is a business coach and researcher of DoMyWriting. He writes on topics such as small business marketing strategies, human resources related best practices and customer service.