Abraham Lincoln influenceThis is a simple 5-step process to for influencing people to change their minds. It’s not the only way to do it, but it does give a step-by-step process that I trust you will find useful.

The process is derived from NLP, but if you’re not familiar with that area you can slot in whatever knowledge you do have into the appropriate steps. For example, if you are an expert in body language, you will know which postures and gestures radiate credibility, or if you are an expert in classical rhetoric (for which I recommend Sam Leith’s book You Talkin’ To Me? by the way), you will have your own ways to preframe out objections.

1. Credibility

Establish your credibilitycongruence, authority, social proof, command tonality. Knowing your desired outcome is important here too. If you know what you want the other person to do, it gives you a goal for your communication and helps you judge whether you are getting closer to your goal or further away, so you know when to change tack if you need to.

Anticipate and preframe out potential objections (give credible examples that counter objections before the change candidate even thinks of them).

2. Rapport

Establish rapport – responsiveness, understanding, friendliness, matching, positive body language/voice tone. Notice what you can about the “change candidate’s” values.

3. Away-froms

Establish/discover the problems that the ‘change candidate’ faces.

4. Future Implications

Explore/ emphasise what will happen if they don’t make a change – you are aiming to ramp up the away-from motivation here. Go as far into the future as you need to in order to get them to realise the seriousness of their problems.

5. Towards your proposed solution

Present your proposed solution. Use ‘because’ to give reasons to hit both towards and away-from motivations.

Try this out and let us know how you get on by leaving a comment below! And feel free to use this model in your courses, articles or books, as long as you include an originator credit to me and a link/URL to coachingleaders.co.uk.

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The CRAFT Model by Andy Smith is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at http://coachingleaders.co.uk/the-craft-model-how-to-influence-people/.

photo: Abraham Lincoln from Wikimedia

The CRAFT Model – How To Influence People

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