Good “Pre-Persuasion” Makes Everything Else Easier

Do you find it easy to persuade people? That’s a broad question, with an answer that is likely to be some version of, “sometimes.” Whether someone is easily persuaded depends on a lot. The size of the ask, the environment and situation you’re in, the kind of person you’re trying to persuade, and other variables can all play a part in how easily someone is persuaded. But when you lay a good foundation of what we call “pre-persuasion,” it makes the actual persuasion much easier.

So, what, exactly, is “pre-persuasion?” It’s basically all the work you do before you make the final ask that makes your audience more receptive to your ask when you do make it. It involves mind-bending concepts like preparing for meetings, treating people with respect, being a good listener, and building credibility with your audience. It may seem glaringly obvious, but you’d be amazed how often people overlook these critical steps towards good (and successful) persuasion.

Pre-persuasion begins long before it’s time to make that final ask, and we believe you should always be ready to enter “pre-persuasion” mode. And even after you make the ask, that process of good listening, building credibility, etc. should continue, because you’re always setting yourself up for future persuasion. When you continue to treat people well after the ask, we might call that “post-persuasion.” But in reality it is simply pre-persuasion for the next ask!

Can you still get a favorable outcome if you don’t lay that pre-persuasion groundwork? Yes, but we guarantee it will be much harder.

Good luck.

We believe that great communication skills change the world. We transform people and organizations of all sizes with simple, repeatable techniques, through an integrated platform of corporate training, coaching, and asynchronous learning.

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Dean Brenner

A book about change

The Latimer Group’s CEO Dean Brenner is a noted keynote speaker and author on the subject of persuasive communication. He has written three books, including Persuaded, in which he details how communication can transform organizations into highly effective, creative, transparent environments that succeed at every level.