Art of Persuasion
Why is communication so important? What is an effective communication? How should we communicate and why should we communicate? These are the different questions that come to my mind when I read about the different topics related to business communications and communications in general. The primary aim of communication in my opinion is to persuade others about the quality of the point that we want to make with our communication process with them. In the past, communication process was not given such an important, but at present, due to the world becoming a global village and people from different cultural backgrounds talking business with each other, the effectiveness of the communication process has become a topic of scientific research. People specialize in business communication and are paid good sums of money to share their expertise with business people. The purpose of this essay is to emphasize on the importance of persuasion and prove with examples that persuasion is an art that can be learnt. I would also provide details on how persuasion can help in the achievement of personal and organizational goals.
So what is persuasion? Persuasion is the process of an attempt to convince others about the facts or opinions that you are delivering to them via the communication process that you are engaged with them. It is a way to bring changes in the attitudes of others to agree to the suggestions that you are making to them (Kruglanski, Webster, & Klem, 1993). So whenever you are eager to convince others about something and you can’t let it go even if it takes some time, you are trying to persuade.
Persuasion is an important art that has to be learnt to make others understand your suggestions and point of view in a business environment. for example, you have a great idea but you do not have the communication skills to deliver it to the top management, you neither the organization would benefit from it. On the other hand, people with ideas not better than you would be able to sell it to the top management and other employers due to the possession of the communication skills that enables them to persuade others.
Persuasion may be bad or good. Good persuasion is a good quality to possess. Good persuasion comes with being good listeners. When we talk about communication, we think that it could mean trying to talk to others endlessly in an attempt to persuade them. But this is not the case. Communication is a process that not only requires speaking but also listening. Therefore, when you listen to others carefully, you make a good impression of yourself in their minds and they would also listen to you carefully. You will be able to create a situation of good persuasion and it would not be a huge issue to communicate to them what is in your mind and what you want to make them think about it.
Bad communication on the other is a result of manipulative techniques that are utilized by people who think that can outsmart just any one. This is where you think that others have less understanding than yourself and you can somehow deceive them with your manipulative techniques and, sometimes, lies. This may work in the short term, but in the long run, such techniques are not useful. Therefore, you have to be honest and believe in what you are communicating to others and trying to persuade them. Bad communication can bring a bad reputation with top management and the customers. It would not only be bad for the image of the organization, but also for your own professional and personal growth. Therefore, bad persuasion must be avoided at any cost.
When dealing with clients, it is important to be prepared for any questions from them. The best option is to prepare a presentation before you have to meet them and gather as much facts in the presentation as possible. A market research about the needs and expectations of the client would be really helpful. Please remember, if you don’t know an answer to a question, its ok. Just tell the clients that you are sorry as you don’t know the answer at the moment. Tell them that you would do your research and inform them. Take the email or the telephone number of the client and send them the answer later once you have clarified it from different resources. We all have our limitations when it comes to providing information during the communication process. The same goes for the clients. They would definitely be supportive when you are honest about your inability to answer and may appreciate your eagerness to find an answer to their enquiry.
One other point that I would want to make is to definitely persuade, but never over persuade. By over persuasion I mean never try to persuade other over a limit. What the limit of the persuasion should be is something you have to decide on your own, but you would be aware of when to stop to try to persuade by closely observing the behavior and body language of the people you are communicating with.
In conclusion, I would like to suggest to do your own online research from credible scientific resources about communication and art of persuasion and try to discussion it with your co-workers. Art of persuasion can be a game changer for the professional development of just anyone. If this art is learnt, effective communication would become possible and so would the selling of your ideas be possible.