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Ignite Your Power of Persuasion

The art and science behind the power of persuasionTips from the pros to help you get what you want!

By Kathy Mercure

To get what you want, keep your outcomes specific, measurable and reciprocal advises Stephen McGarvey of Richmond Hill, Ont.’s Solutions in Mind. McGarvey helps organizations improve their communication, influence and persuasion. “If you want a higher budget for an event, you need to build rapport with the person holding the purse strings, explain why you want the higher budget, how it will improve the event and what’s in it for them.”

The hard sell approach is out. Now it’s all about forming and building relationships, according to Rosemary Polegato, professor of commerce at Mount Allison University’s Ron Joyce Centre for Business Studies in Sackville, N.B. Understanding the beliefs and values of your pitch recipient will give you insight on how to influence them. “Some want just facts, others need to feel the ‘sizzle’ or emotion behind the message.”

Whatever approach you take to persuade, follow through with integrity. Do what you promise to do, because in the end, reputation is everything.

Persuasion 101
Here are some tips from Arlene Dickinson of Dragons’ Den fame, from her book, Persuasion: A New Approach to Changing Minds

What Persuasion is NOT
It’s not about hard sell, trickery or making others feel guilty. You should be genuine, completely honest and transparent.

Principled Pitching
“A ‘pitch’ is any occasion when you’re presenting an idea that matters to you and trying to get someone on board. Authenticity, honesty, and the promise of reciprocity are the foundation of principled persuasion.”

Believe in Yourself
“One way to take risks that might end in failure is to focus not only on what you’ll learn, but also the fact that, win or lose, the gamble isn’t going to be what defines you.”

Prepare. Listen. Understand. Pitch.
“Before you utter a word, you need to prepare, you need to rein in your ego, and you need to figure out what’s driving the other party.”

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