It is one thing to use NLP Techniques to build great programmes and projects that can create serious results, but often it is key individuals that will either make or break a project. Particularly when dealing with culture change you need all your influential managers working for you. Sometimes this can be a challenge, particularly if they are senior to you.
Getting what you want from your Senior ManagementUsing NLP Persuasion Tactics
Below are the edited highlights of an email interchange I have had with an extremely good manager who leads a team and has created some fabulous results. Barry has wanted to take this further but has been having some trouble convincing more senior managers to commit their time, energy and resources. This is how he got their commitment.
NLP Business Tactics, the Results
As this is an ongoing story and some of the people involved would not be pleased if they knew how easily they can be swayed into doing the right thing for the company all the names (including Barry) have been changed.
Here is the testimonial I received and below it the strategies I suggested to Barry to create these results:
Thanks Rintu your help is really appreciated.
Things are on the up!
Sharon sent me a note about the presentation with a bit tagged on about what our targets were. (I have given her these previously so the fact she asked I knew she wasn’t reading what I was sending!) I suggested we get together to discuss the coaching and targets and how this will improve her centre’s results.
I used some of your techniques and got her full agreement that the managers need to do more to manage their teams and that my team is pivotal to increasing results. It was a great meeting so thanks for your help.
I also used the opportunity to involve her in a selection process I was going through for recruiting a new team member. Of course I knew who I wanted but I got her thinking it was her decision.
I also showed her some applications forms I had received that were very poor but had been signed off by one of her senior managers. Again I made her feel it was her that was surprised at the poor quality being recommended and got her to agree we need the best possible people coaching the operational teams.
All in all I am making progress!
The NLP Techniques and Hypnotic Patterns that I described to Barry in my email below are a mixture of techniques from two great persuasion artists that anyone serious about this field should read although approach this from a psychological rather than NLP or Hypnosis angle.
NLP Persuasion Resources
The first is a book by Robert Cialdini called Influence: Science and Practice . This is required reading for anyone that is interested in how to persuade or influence others. In the patterns below I explain several of Cialdini’s principles that are involved.
The second book is by David Lieberman and is called Get Anyone to Do Anything . This book approaches persuasion from a traditional psychological perspective and has some great tactics. When you read this book you will see Lieberman’s tactics on getting people to return your calls as part of the structure of what I suggested Barry try out on his senior manager.
The parts of the email that I sent Barry with the tactics and patterns I suggested are pasted in below:
I can sense your frustration and here is a thought…Instead of fighting it, work with it. So if you can get that meeting with Sharon here are a couple of things you can add in to the mix.
The meeting objectives (not necessarily for anyone else’s eyes) would be something like:
- Getting Sharon to openly and publicly praise the results your team has got.
- Getting Sharon to buy in (publicly) to the ideas you have for moving this forward.
- Turning around or at least negating the attitude of her senior managers.
Here is structure for the meeting (without content, sorry I’m not that good):
1. Benefit statement of what can be achieved by implementing new ideas
2. How we got to where we are…including a quick run through of your current presentation
3. Feedback Sandwich for one of senior managers for supporting the coaching team…I’ll explain this bit a little lower down
4. New ideas Coach and facilitate this so she feels like she is creating or contributing to these ideas.
5. Get agreement and seal commitment to the ideas (easy to do if you get point 4 right.
6. Future Pace the benefits again.
Okay, point 3. Let’s say for example you are targeting Richard as the senior manager you want to deal with and you want him to release more time from his team managers so you can coach them. A cut down version of the feedback sandwich in your discussion with Sharon would be:
Praising Richard for his support of the work you are doing specifically by…fill in examples (they don’t have to be right, just plausible and connected)
The phrase so far is open, public and specific to things that he is doing to completely support the aims and objectives of your coaching team…AND WHAT WOULD MAKE IT EVEN BETTER IS WHEN he…(fill in what you want him to do).
Then to seal it down you tell Sharon it was Richard who gave you the idea in the first place.
Now the statement looks like
Praise supporting the team by specific behaviours, what will make this even better is when Richard releases his managers on a regular basis to be coached by you. This was an idea Richard gave you when you had a coffee with him a month ago when he was talking about…fill in any plausible connected conversation you have had with him…
Anyway this works because people are unlikely to turn away open praise…particularly when it is specific and targeted at their behaviour. I have used this sort of pattern to build cult like followings out of managers when I worked in the corporate world. Basically agree with whatever they do, openly praise them for it AND link it to supporting whatever it is you want from them.
Hope it helps
NLP Patterns of Persuasion to Manage Authority
As patterns go this works well when having to deal with people in positions of authority over you or you have no direct control over.
By going to their manager with criticisms you risk alienating yourself and creating enemies.
By walking in with open praise for their actions, making them think the good ideas were theirs and then linking all this to actions you want them to take almost guarantees they will work for you.
If you want to learn more about this sort of approach there are two books where I developed this sort of pattern from.