The Silver Rule of Influencing

22nd January 2019

The Golden Rule of Influencing:

       If you want someone to DO something, you have to ask them to DO something.

So, your comms must end with a ‘Please DO this’.

Or they won’t do it.

And the SILVER Rule of Influencing:

       People are more likely to DO something when it’s in their interest to.

So, to improve your chances of them saying “yes”, state upfront why it’s in their interest to do what you want.

For example, if a parent says “go to bed”, the child thinks it isn’t in his interest. So he’ll kick off.

And if the parent says “go to bed, and I’ll read you your favourite story”, the child hears the bad-news “bed” before the good-news “story”. So he’ll switch off.

But stating the benefit upfront changes everything – “It’s time for your favourite story upstairs. So let’s quickly get you in bed, so I can read it to you”

Now, that’s much more likely to work.

So putting the gold and silver rules together, here are the three steps of influencing:

  1. 1. Identify what you want someone to DO (Gold)
  2. 2. Identify why they’ll think it’s in their interest to DO so (Silver)
  3. 3. Flip it – say the benefit first, before asking them to DO it

And if it works with getting a child to go to bed, it’ll work with pretty much anything…

Action Point

Use these three steps with the next person you have to influence today

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