Effective communication is all about influencing the thoughts and actions of others. There are countless “selling tactics” that you might apply to a given situation. But it is easy to shoot yourself in the foot with them. Why?
No one likes to feel like they are being manipulated.
How do you feel when you’re led to act outside your best interests? How do you feel about the person who influenced you when you believe they acted to serve their interests above yours?
Make It Genuine
One of my favorite sales books on consultative selling is Let’s Get Real or Let’s Not Play. The authors repeatedly remind their readers that:
“Intent is More Important Than Technique.
But Technique is Still Important. “
If your intent is to influence others to act against their interests, the best techniques are unlikely to get the other person to take action.
What happens to your ability to lead when you attempt to manipulate others? Authenticity and transparency are universally valued leadership traits.
Forms of Intent
When you share your ambitions, dreams, aims, etc, in advance of your ask, people are more likely to support you and less likely to push back. Assuming you have a win-win proposition.
Improving Your Technique
In addition to Let’s Get Real, here’s my top three book recommendations for improving your influencing skills:
The chorus of this 60s hit single echos the best intentions of leaders everywhere:
I’m just a soul whose intentions are good.
Oh Lord, please don’t let me be misunderstood.
Here’s Eric Burdon & The Animals to sing Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood.