Developing Your Management And Business Skills: The Six Principles Of Influence

The Six Principles of Influence were defined by Robert Cialdini, and published in his book, “Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion.” in 1984. The principles are: reciprocity, commitment, social proof, liking, authority, and scarcity. The principles should be used honestly and truthfully and not to manipulate or deceive. Let’s look at each one, and how you might use it in the scenario we are discussing of getting an idea accepted by senior management.

1. Reciprocity.

People feel obliged to return favours. So if you have helped a colleague, they may feel obliged to support your proposal. You could identify someone whose support you would value, and support them or do some favours for them. Or you may be in a position to remind others of favours already done for them

2. Commitment and Consistency.

We like to be consistent. So a colleague who has been interested in your proposal initially will probably continue to support it as the idea is developed. Try to get people’s commitment and “buy in” early on, by involving them in the development of the idea.

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