How to Persuade People to Take Action

Concentrated colleagues brainstorm discussing paperwork at briefing

One day, you were lying down on your yoga mat relaxing, in Shavasana when a brilliant work idea popped into your head. The next workday, you share your idea with your supervisor, and she is unimpressed. Pablo Picasso famously said, “Action is the foundational key to all success.” Here’s how to convince people to take action.

1. Make It Worth People’s Time to Listen to Your Idea

If you can’t get people to listen to you, then they won’t be able to consider your idea. People are busy. Many individuals struggle to find time to read, exercise, or eat properly. This means that they won’t listen to you if it seems like you’re wasting their time. When sharing your idea, be sure to explain quickly what your idea is and why it’s a good one. Connect your idea to their personal lives, workplace, or an organization that’s important to them.

To be an effective seller, you must be credible and passionate about your idea. People should be able to relate to you and see how your idea is beneficial. According to “The Influential Mind,” you’ll be more likely to influence the behavior of others when you do it based on common ground instead of trying to be right.

When you’re attempting to convince someone of something, it’s probably your instinct to change their beliefs or actions by sharing information that shows you are right and they are wrong. This usually fails because people will form a counterargument or walk away. Persuade others of your idea by using common ground.

People are social creatures. Many folks prefer to think that they have their own thoughts and ideas and that they aren’t impacted by what others say or do, but most really are influenced by others.

2. Show People That You Are Trustworthy

Once you show others that you care about your idea, they will start to see you as someone who is trustworthy. When you’re sharing your idea, those who are listening to you will wonder if they should trust what you’re saying. It’s important for people to feel comfortable in your presence.

Assess the mood of the people you are presenting to if the atmosphere in the room seems quiet or down, then they’ll be more open to ideas that appear safe. When people are feeling happy and excited, they’ll be more responsive to risky ideas.

Your listeners will search for internal and external encouragements to decide if you’re trustworthy. They will consider your reputation and the evidence that you’re presenting. Those you are presenting to will have questions, and you’ll want to do your best to answer them without their asking. The more trust and credibility that you have with your audience, the better your chances are of their considering your idea.

3. Outline the Actions and Simplify the Process

Once you’ve motivated your listeners to take action, explain how you intend to make your idea happen. At this stage, your audience is ready to consider your vision, but they will likely be unsure about how to implement it. Don’t leave without explaining the action steps.

The ability to persuade others requires more than just selling your idea. It’s about inspiring behavior changes or motivating people to act. Avoid inspiring people into taking steps without outlining how you intend for them to get there. When you explain the actions, you’ll decrease their fear and doubt. Simplify the action process to decrease any perceived risks. For instance, if you’re talking with someone who you believe would take your idea to his or her supervisor, then be prepared with a prewritten email that explains your idea clearly. That way, your thought is easy to share.

Gain support ahead of time. Before making your presentation, it would be helpful to talk to one or two people about your idea to get them on board with implementing it. Ask for feedback on your plan, even if you’re comfortable with everything about it. When you ask others for input, they’ll feel included and more supportive of what you’re trying to do.

4. Persuade People to Believe in You

Brainfluence is the art of using neuroscience and your knowledge of behavior patterns to persuade people to believe in you. While not every amazing idea that you have will come to fruition, how to convince someone of your way of thinking is invaluable.

Turn those ideas into action. Contact us at the Leonard Productivity Intelligence Institute to learn more about how to persuade others today.