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Your Influence Toolkit

Your Influence Toolkit
What we have been doing this week is building your influence toolkit. We’ve been really drilling into the yellow segment of the Michigan leadership model. As you recall, we started with the concept of social proof and the idea here is that you can influence people by showing that similar others are doing what you’re asking them to do. Benchmarking, showing endorsements of high status others.
Calling for a public vote when you have majority on your side. All of these are tactics to activate social proof.
We talked about authority, in a sense that we can use symbols and signs of authority to influence others. Titles, signaling your expertise, the way you dress, business attire. Elicits compliance with authority. We also discussed three very powerful kinds of biases that transform into potent influence tactics. Recall availability, which is we’re particularly influenced by very vivid imagery, by salient events, and more recent events.
Remember also the importance of framing, where I can take the same idea and frame it as a gain, in which case, I would be influencing the audience towards my risk of behaviors. Or I can reframe it as a loss in which case, I would be influencing the group towards more risk taking behaviors. And I can open a meeting by anchoring the group. Either on high or low values, whether it’s a budget estimate, a cost estimate, or an offer to the customer. Use liking as an influence tactic. Remember that we’re much more likely to be influenced by people who we like. So manage your professional appearance, emphasize similarities with the person you’re trying to influence. Use scarcity as another influence tool.
Remember limited opportunities to pursue a particular proposal. Limited time offer, limited inventories. Use reciprocity by offering help and resources proactively. That’s what activates that notion of social debt. In addition to using these tactics, always take a mental audit of your body pose, your hand gestures. We talked about high power poses, and low power poses. We talked about using illustrational and positive hand gestures. Think about the time of the day, and when you want to get on the calendar of your boss.
And I would like to close our discussion of influence this week, with caveat about ethics. Many of the tactics we discussed this week are incredibly powerful. They’re powerful because they can bypass the cognition of the person you’re trying to influence. The person might not even realize that they’re being influenced. And so going forward, I’d like for us to have our moral compass on at all times. There’s a fine line, sometimes, between influence and manipulation.
In week four with Scott, you’ll come back to the distinction. You’ll learn how to differentiate between influence and manipulation, and how to protect yourself from the unwanted influence of others.
Thank you so much for listening and I look forward to seeing you next week.
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Influencing People

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