I believe that “Connection” already exists between us, but we’re not Aware of it, because we are not Present to the moment.
Are Cialdini’s Principles of Influence the ultimate tool for “making people do what you want”?
If the people you’re talking to are like the turkey in the story, then Yes; most probably, they will behave as “sleepwalkers”.
But if the person you’re talking to is mindful, present and pays attention, then they will catch your trick and you will lose their trust. Those principles will become useless.
However, when both of you are present and have a sense of connection between you two, then the Principles of Influence start working again. The beauty is that – when there is a true rapport between you two – none of you could entertain a thought of “taking advantage” of the other. When coming from this place of trust and connection, you can’t use those principles but with a Playful attitude, non-attached to the outcome. There will be no “making someone do something”.
That’s Influence in alignment with the natural order of things.
It was said that Being a Leader means ‘to get things done’ and ignore the fact that some people might get “pissed off” along the way by the methods employed. That “the end justifies the means”, so you can use bad or immoral methods as long as you accomplish something good by using them.
Personally, I disagree. I believe that Leadership is about Inspiring people to align with the idea you believe in.
The main distinction: inspiring vs forcing or imposing, just because you think that your idea is a “good thing”.
As a Leader, you have a Vision and you articulate it, you express it in words. The people who recognize themselves in that Vision – that is, the ones who believe what you believe – will be inspired to align with you. Why? Because that Vision is too big to be accomplished by one single person and, if one wants that Vision to become real, one has to associate with others. That means that people may decide to become “followers” not ‘for you’, but ‘for themselves’.
The people in that group have a common purpose and they know they need each other – if that purpose were to be reached. That means that they naturally take care of each other, protect each other, help each other feel safe and secure in that group. They need to Trust and Respect each other, for the group to continue to exist.
As an example, I have this Vision:
– I believe that Selling is about Offering a fair Exchange of Value.
– I believe that Selling is about Creating more Value for All parties involved.
– I believe that Value (just as Beauty) is always in the eyes of the Receiver; that means that if I see a thing or an idea as Valuable, it is perfectly possible that you may see it as worthless – and, if that’s the case, I have no business imposing on you my belief.
– My dream is to live in a world where people are seeing each other as Friends, Trusting and Respecting each other just as they would want to be Trusted and Respected; a world where people are Connected and Offering Service to each other.
All I can do is to articulate this Vision the best I can, so people who can recognize themselves in this Vision may volunteer to join. The key word here is “volunteer” – if they decide to join, they will do it ‘for themselves’ and ‘for their Vision’, not ‘for me’. Then, my job would be to inspire them to protect each other, so we could Trust each other.
Suppose that I manipulated you to join this movement, this group – through tactics, emotional pressure, a bit of deceiving… Sooner or later, something will not feel right for you, you’ll realize you’ve been manipulated. What happens with your Trust? Would you still Trust me? Would you still protect my back? More importantly, can < I > rely on you?
That’s why I believe that taking advantage of people just so the “leader” would “make things happen” is absurd. That’s “using people”. That’s not Leadership, that’s “bad selling” – as in I “make” you buy this product or idea, because < I > think it’s good for you. It’s almost like doing therapy without consent. It’s unethical by definition.
I’m sure you wouldn’t like someone else to do that to you.
Think of this for a moment…
If you are a True Leader, how can you articulate your Vision so others would understand it?
What’s your deep Why – Why do you even want that Vision to become real, in the first place?
How can you take care of your Followers, so that they feel Safe and Secure and protected?