Quick question: On a scale from 1-10 how would you rank yourself in your ability to influence others?
Many times, networking events involve meeting people for the first time and spending the entire event seated next to them. Is it possible to influence someone you have just met?
Here is a 5-step process that you can use in those situations to increase your influence:
Ask questions – For example: What do you do? How long have you been doing it? What do you love most about your job?
He who asks the question leads the conversation.
Listen – If you break focus or eye contact after you have asked a question you will communicate that they are not interesting and not worth your time or attention. What are you listening for? You are listening to what motivates them, what is important to them.
Relate – Work to relate to something they have mentioned. If they say that they love to go fishing you could ask them how and where they like to fish. If it were me I would share how I am not any good at fishing and my son really is interested in fishing and I just don’t know how to help him with it. Ask what they love most about fishing. This question will give more insights into motivation.
Determine how you want to influence them – Here’s a simple example: Do you want your new friend to go up to the dessert table with you, so you don’t go alone and look like a pig? Okay, now you know how you want to influence your new friend.
Define what’s in it for them – What’s in it for them may be as simple as a really delicious dessert. Mention how delicious the dessert table looks. They may say something like, “Yeah it looks really good.” Then you can say, “Hey, do you want to go over to the table and see what they have?
Maybe they are a really friendly person that wants to be perceived as a loyal friend. In that case you can work the angle of, “Hey, I don’t want to go up to the dessert table all alone. Do you want to go up there with me and pick something out?”
They will most likely say yes, no matter how you ask them, because they have been talking to you for the last 30 minutes. Once they do agree to go with you, you have officially influenced them and your ability to influence them in other ways is very high at this point. Now you have created an experience with a person that you just met. Once you get your dessert and go back to the table you may want to go ahead and ask to meet the following week for coffee and see how you can support each other’s businesses.
In the beginning of this blog I asked how you would rank yourself in the area of influence. If you want an assessment that you can use to rank your influence, download my free Influence Assessment by clicking the link below that says Influence Assessment.
Increase your influence, realize your dream.
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