Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Does asking for a favor make others want to do more for you?

"One of the most effective ways to influence others is to ask for advice or assistance"

Imagine that you are new to a position and you want to persuade a client to give you some business?    She knows that you are inexperienced and your knowledge of her business and of the industry is extremely limited.  What chance would you have of making a sale?   The odds would be pretty low, right?

However, what if you were to say something like this.....'I confess that my knowledge of your business needs is very limited.  And I was wondering if you could give me some advice?   What would I have to do to earn the privilege of doing business with you?    Odds are over-whelmingly strong that she would give you some very valuable advice. 


*  because we programmed to want to help when asked
*  because it is empowering to be asked for help
*  because it is totally non threatening so the client loses her resistance to you

A little story...

Ben Franklin had a political opponent that fought him on every turn.   The man was a pain in the butt to Ben.  A strong dislike was growing between them.    Ben decided to try and turn things around.

Here is what Ben did....

Ben knew the man had a wonderful library of valuable books.   Ben asked the man if he would consider lending him one of his books that Ben was most interested in reading.   He was at first shocked that an advisary would ask for a favor.   He considered Ben's request and relented and loaned the book to Ben.

Then what happened...

Ben read the book and offered gracious thanks for the favor.  Ben noticed the man softened to him and became even friendly.  So what did Ben do?   He asked him for assistance in developing a bill for Congress   He agreed.   They became friends!

Asking for advice or a small favor causes others to be more receptive to us.

Asking for advice is significantly more persuasive than using pressure tactics.   It doesn't build pressure or leave a sour taste. Also, they will tell you how they like to be sold....isn't that beautiful?   And here is an unexpected bonus for asking for advice....

When we ask for advice we are perceived as being more intelligent!   After all, you are showing some wisdom by choosing to ask me for advice"

This is how even an inexperienced person can level the persuasion table.

Pssst.....can I ask you for a small favor?   Would you be so kind as to hit the f button below and share this with your facebook friends?   Because it would make me so happy....thanks!