The four steps to mastering persuasion and command

Why do people rise as leaders or managers? For two simple reasons.

1. They can get things done well and

2. Because they can bring others with them. The one thing that separates an authentic leader from others is that the authentic leader has willing followers.

Persuasion has become an essential managerial tool because businesses are typically run by groups of talented individuals, often very unenthusiastic about command and control tactics. Teams outstrip the performance of individuals in groups every time. How do you, as a leader or manager, turn individuals into teams? Persuasion.

Persuasion is not about making a one-time sale or winning a one-time argument. You don’t want to convince a staff member to pour their heart and soul into a major change project and then have that same person regret it a week after they started because that project was always a dud. Persuasion is about making a professional case for yourself, which your later actions back up daily thereafter. Persuasion creates teams, allies, collaborators and friends who are with you for the long haul. And the good news is you can learn to persuade be you extrovert or introvert.


There are four key steps to persuasion and command of others.

Persuasion is a skill – part psychology – part human relationships – part communication so you start by studying some key aspects of each.



One key principle is self-awareness, recognising that the way we each see the world is different. Even when two people are standing side by side looking at the same thing, the minor differences between them mean that they see even the same things differently. Simply understanding that, accepting that differences are normal means that you will approach persuasion more effectively.


Behavioural Flexibility:

An old rule of human relationships was to treat people the way you wish you to be treated yourself. That strategy doesn’t work too well. What is required is to treat people the way they wish to be treated. This requires us to be more interested in the other person, to find out how they tick, to find out how they wish to be treated along with flexible in the way we behave and communicate with others. That flexibility, treating people more in line with their preferences makes you more persuasive.


Creating a shared pool of mutual understanding:

Often communication is seen as a broadcast, even with one to one conversation, verbal or written. Sadly, many people consider that the whole point of the conversation is to tell you their story, their opinion or their view of the world. By shifting the purpose of communication to one of creating a shared pool of mutual understanding, genuine common ground, you have a much greater chance of persuading someone.


Ethos, Pathos, Logos

A lot of what we know and do today is arguably based on the philosophies and teachings of some of the great Greek philosophers from over 3000-years ago. The most commonly accepted and used principles of persuasion today are based on Ethos, Pathos & Logos, and on the teachings of such great Greek philosophers such as Plato, Socrates, and Aristotle.

Ethos – Personal credibility

Pathos – Empathy

Logo – Logical argument

Establishing credibility first is critical as without it the other person is unlikely to listen, pay attention and believe what the other person is saying.


Having established personal credibility, then the persuader will attempt to understand the other person and see things from their point of view. They, of course, are more likely to listen to the proposal because they feel that the persuader is credible (Ethos), clearly understands their point of view and their challenges (Empathy) and are therefore inclined to see the value (Logos) in what is being suggested (your idea).


If you want to improve your powers of persuasion, command and leadership – this International Best Seller is a great next step

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