What is the greatest persuasion tactic to use?

What is the greatest persuasion tactic to use? by @MindskillsUK

Answer by Phil Callaghan:

Here’s a persuasion tactic that you can use instantly.

With this simple piece of language, you’ll be able to reopen your line of persuasion after being closed out.

As with many of my other mind hacks, this one is designed to deal with those who will shut you down through reflex. Annoying, right?

Here’s the way to get a fair hearing for your proposal.

The ‘But’ Flip

One of the most common ways to shut someone down is to use the word ‘but’.

Some examples:

  • “Your proposal is good, but we just don’t have the resources”
  • “I do want to buy a Porsche from you, but you don’t have it in pink”

The word ‘but’ seems to reject everything that came before it. Ouch.

The obvious next step after delivering these bombshells is for them to walk away. Proposal ignored, sale not made. Misery.

Or you could use the following tactic to re-open the interaction:

Reverse the sequence of what comes before and after the ‘but’.

In our examples:

  • “We don’t have the resources, but you agree the proposal is good, so can we look at alternative ways of making it happen?”
  • “We don’t have it in pink, but you do want to buy a Porsche from us, so if you pick out the model you want, I’ll speak to the re-sprayers…”

Suddenly we’re back in business and can get a second (or even a third or fourth) go at persuading them.

This approach allows you to re-focus on what’s important (by flipping the ‘but’) and then you can keep negotiating until you get a win-win.

Test it out for yourself – simple, effective persuasive.

If you like this persuasion tactic, you’ll probably like these too:

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Phil Callaghan's answer to What's the most outstanding life hack?

What is the greatest persuasion tactic to use?


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