We’ve all got that one friend or coworker that seems to get whatever they want. No matter if it’s time off or a great deal on a fancy new Fendi bag, they can talk anyone into almost anything. But how did they become so persuasive? Discover the 17 tactics that persuasive people use to get what they want.
If you want to know how to persuade people, there are 17 simple habits you can cultivate. Being persuasive isn’t about some secret inherent trait. It’s all about knowing people and knowing when and how to purvey your desires. With enough time and attention to detail, you can develop these same creative habits and be on your way to becoming more persuasive and getting what you want!
1. Be Confident
Being or sounding insecure isn’t the way to make someone believe in your cause. People want to follow someone with confidence and they want to follow things they feel they too can believe in.
Look at someone persuasive like your friend or coworker. When they speak, do they sound confident? Chances are, they do. That’s because persuasive people are confident people that believe in their desires and convictions. So start believing in yourself a bit more and believe in the words you speak.
If all else fails…fake it ’til you make it.
2. Silence Is Also A Virtue
Knowing when to speak is important. What’s equally as important? Knowing when to keep silent.
Persuasive people know that not every battle is worth fighting. Sometimes, just keeping your mouth closed and letting things lie is the best way to bring someone over to your way of thinking. Arguing until someone gives in is no way to win brownie points. After all, if you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say it all, right?
Just like silence, listening is key to persuading those around you. Persuasive people are confident, but that doesn’t mean their absorbed only in their own thoughts. It’s actually quite the opposite.
If you want to really learn how to connect with the people around you, truly listen to what they are saying with an open mind and an open heart. Try to connect with and empathize with what they are feeling. Not only does this form a connection, but it allows you to gauge your audience’s emotional and mental states.
4. Honesty is Everything
If you want to be more persuasive, you need to be more honest. People that are truly persuasive are honest with those around them, sometimes even bluntly so. Because of their honesty, they are seen as more genuine, which makes their audience trust them more.
5. Time It Right
You need to gauge your audience and really nail your timing perfectly if you want to persuade others more easily. Just think about it. Do you want to try and convince someone to see things your way when they’ve just lost a pet or loved one? What about immediately after a particularly nasty divorce?
You have to know your audience and you have to recognize that timing is key. With the wrong timing, you can completely destroy your chances of convincing them to see things your way.
6. Raise Others Up, Don’t Tear Them Down
Some of you might think that to be more persuasive, you always have to have the upper hand. But that just isn’t the case. People that really have the power to persuade don’t do so by tearing others down — they do it by lifting them up. Make the people around you feel as though they can accomplish something great. You will inspire them and create a genuine bond and sense of feeling.
7. Being Pushy Is Not Cute
No one likes a pushy person — so don’t be one! You won’t win anyone over by trying to bully them into your corner so don’t even try it. Instead, try pressing your ideas gently and with sound reasoning and logic behind them. If your audience doesn’t seem receptive, drop the topic and wait for a better time to try again. Don’t suffocate people!
8. Found Relationships
Persuasive people are likable people…that’s just a fact. They are people you want to befriend and people that you feel driven to impress or do things for. Having some kind of relationship is key to that aspect. Form genuine connections with people and listen when they speak. Truly get to know them and you will find them easier to convince.
9. Don’t Be Afraid To Be Persistent
You don’t want to be pushy, but you do want to be persistent. Stick to your guns and stand by the things that you want. Don’t fold or compromise easily just because someone has a different opinion from your own. It’s okay to believe persistently in your perspective, just be careful not to cross the line into obtuse.
10. Head Nod Persuasive Hack
Head movements are an easy way to show that you are engaged in a conversation and truly listening to what the other party is saying. Another trick? If you want a positive response, nod your head while you present your argument. Before the other party realizes it, they will be nodding their head and agreeing right along with you.
Want to convey something negative or get a negative response? Shake your head left and right as you speak.
11. Return the Investment
No, I’m not talking money here. I’m talking about returning the kindness of those around you with small gestures of appreciation. You don’t need to go above and beyond, but if someone does something for you, return the favor in some small way. One that says: “Thanks, I really appreciate it.” Eventually, you can ask for a larger favor of your own if needed.
12. Speak the Same Language
Being able to put yourself on the same wavelength as those around you is key. If the people you are trying to persuade speak in a more casual manner, then you should speak in a more casual manner too. If they speak in a formal manner, speak in a formal manner too.
If you can’t put yourself on the same wavelength as others, it’s hard to empathize with them or gain their confidence. Even worse? You risk coming off as haughty or self-important.
I’ve said that word a lot throughout this article: empathize. But what does that mean?
It means being able to connect with and understand the position or perspective of others. It’s being able to connect with their emotions, both good and bad, and being able to feel those emotions out of compassion for them.
Being empathetic allows you to connect with your audience and establish a relationship, which is key to gaining the trust of the people you are trying to persuade. In return, they might just be more likely to see things your way.
14. Back Off Occasionally
Just like knowing when to keep your mouth shut, knowing when to back off or back out is important when it comes to being more persuasive.
Not knowing when to back off can make you look desperate, and desperate people aren’t ones who easily gain trust. It can also make you look too emotional or unreliable. By knowing when to back off, you can make yourself look more confident, rational and secure. In time, this leads to easier persuasion. (Because remember: timing is everything too.)
15. Draw Them In
No one is going to be convinced by your perspective if they aren’t interested. Whether they are interested in you, as a person, or they are interested in your topic of choice: you have to draw them in! Give them a reason to care and your audience will be that much easier to persuade.
16. Know Which Audience Is the Best Audience
Everyone can be persuaded, but knowing which audience best suits your point of view is key to making things easier. Be able to spot the people that are most likely to connect with you and your ideas. Practice that perfect timing and know the best moment to present your perspective to them. This will save you time, energy and work effort!
17. Securely Sound
There’s a fine line between sounding arrogant and sounding educated. If you want people to follow your lead, you need to sound secure in whatever you’re talking about. People can spot insecurity from a mile away, and they are significantly less likely to be persuaded by someone who isn’t even convinced by their own convictions.
So, no matter what you’re talking about, make sure you know it inside and out. This is the only way you can truly sound secure and convince people to follow along with your idea.
And there you have it: 17 ways to become the persuasive person you’ve always wanted to be. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and be confident, secure, authentic and successful. There’s no one stopping you but yourself.