Once I tell you what this secret is, you’ll be surprised how many times you’ve experienced it.
We’ve been focusing on the various ways to win people over to your way of thinking. We’ve talked about the best way to win an argument, a secret for conflict resolution, and what to do when you make a mistake.
Now we’ll talk about how to get someone to agree with you so that you can get business done.
Resistance is futile
I was introduced to the Internet through the ubiquitous chat rooms, found through Yahoo! and a few Christian sites. It wasn’t long before I observed “flame wars.” One person would be certain that they were right and those who disagreed were ignorant slugs.
The longer the argument went on, the more the opposing sides would dig in their heels in resistance.
I’m sure you’ll agree that this is not a great way to win people to your side of an argument, let alone being productive.
When a person says “no,” all of their pride demands that there is consistency in that declaration. A person feels as though they must stick to it. This is why it is very important to go in another direction.
The Secret of Socrates
Socrates was one of the world’s greatest philosophers. He did something that not many people are able to do: he got them to change their minds.
How did he do it?
When discussing an issue with his opponent, he would ask questions that would receive a positive response from the person. Once the person agreed, Socrates would then win several more admissions until the person finally embrace a conclusion that just moments before, they would have passionately denied.
Get your key player to say yes
Occasionally, I get telemarketing calls. One is from a company from which I’ve been a long-time buyer. They employ the “yes” method brilliantly.
Caller: Why hello, there, Mrs. Maguire. I hope it’s a beautiful day where you are. We wanted to let you know that we have a new version of our award-winning photo editing software. Taking photos can be fun but sometimes there may be the imperfect photo, you know… the one that has gorgeous scenery but then a stranger happens to wander into the shot. Have you ever experienced that?
Me: Yes, of course.
Caller: Of course, we all have! And wouldn’t you agree that having a photo editing program that easily allows you to edit out that image of the stranger would be great?
Me: Yes, definitely!
Caller: Well, our new software does that and you’ll be amazed by the results! And have you ever tried to find certain people in your photos but have to go through a bunch of files in order to find them?
Me: Yes, that has happened before…
Caller: Kind of time-consuming, isn’t it?
Me: Yes, it is.
Caller: Well our new program has an automatic tagging system that allows you to identify people and places easily so future searches are a snap. Doesn’t that sound like a great tool?
You get the point.
By the time the caller asks me to buy the program, what are the chances I would say yes?
Learn to ask questions that will get a “yes” response from someone. As you do, you’ll help them see your side of the situation, whether that’s to get their approval for project or their agreement to buy your product or service.
It’s a great way to get business done.