Here is a simple mindset trick you can use to prepare for any persuasion context that will put you in a completely unstoppable frame of mind and have people begging to do what you want them to.
Okay, even for me that sounds over the top. But here is the thing, I have used this strategy for years, to the point where I often do this completely automatically. And I have noticed over the years that when I do this exercise well I get astounding results. And when my results are poor I can often relate it back to how well, or not, I did this exercise.
Preparing Persuasive Presentations
I am going to give you the exercise in the context of preparing a presentation but it works in any persuasion context where you have preparation to do. You can tweak it to fit your situation, for most contexts it will be obvious how you can change his to fit.
So if you are ready, buckle in, here we go on a speed trip on developing an unstoppable persuasion mindset.
A Thought Experiment
This is really just a thought experiment, more specifically a set of questions to ask yourself before preparing your presentation.
- What do you want your audience to be saying or doing at the end of your presentation that they weren’t at the start?
- How will this benefit your audience?
- What resistance will they have that stops them wanting these benefits?
- What message can you give them that will allow them to drop the objection and really see the benefits of what you want them to do?
- Who do you have to be to deliver that message?
And just quickly here is how this works as a series of questions including where the secret sauce that makes this work.
This is what’s Really Going On
The first question gives you the evidence process to know when you have got your result. It is framed as a SMART goal; the time base is the end of your talk, the specific and measurable is covered by can you see them saying and / or doing the result. The only thing you need to ensure is that it is achievable.
The second question gives you the key benefit statements that will allow you to capture and lead the imagination of your audience to the result you want for them. It also gets you to focus on the important people i.e. not you but your audience.
The third question is about uncovering any objections and obstacles. The important point here though seeing those objections from their perspective, not yours.
I am currently helping a family member downsize and move to a new home. He has been very resistant to moving and everyone has been thinking it is because of all the fuss and bother of the move. But when you see it through his eyes it is obvious he is frightened, moving from a house he has lived in for over half his life to something completely unknown. And he has a sense of defeat, no longer being able to manage such a big house and that sort of thing.
The fourth question obviously is about what you need to say or do for them to draw their own conclusions and move with you to the mutually beneficial results.
You can see in the example above the message we need to give the family member is about emotional support, being free again when unburdened from a large house that needs massive upkeep and the move being about gaining a new lease on life. The constant barrage of help and support in packing, moving and unpacking again whilst welcome (and probably needed) is not the thing that will make him want to move.
After the second and third question got you to explore things from your audience’s perspective, the fourth brings you right back into your head. This question is about what YOU can say or do to get them to let go of their objections and realise the benefits.
But the fifth question is the real secret sauce. The thing that makes this work is exploring your needs to be able to deliver the message.
In my example when I thought about it I discovered that I didn’t want him to move either. Logically it is the right thing to do but my identity of this person also involved that house. Until I could change the way I saw that person, as separate from the house he lived in, I would never be as convincing to persuade him to move. In short I am too emotional attached to the status quo to be able to properly help support the change.
Obviously, many examples are not as involved having to change your mindset. But you will be surprised how often this sort of thing comes up. Remember I said I would use the context of presentations?
How often do you think presenters:
- Don’t trust their own expertise?
- Think the audience is not interested in their subject?
- Believe the subject is too boring, complex, or irrelevant?
- Don’t think they have the skills to explain their specialist knowledge?
And of course, there are all the usual things that pop up from confidence to skills in research or delivery techniques like using emotions and dealing with hecklers. But the fifth question brings out the issue of what you need to say, do or be to be able to bring about the change that is needed.
No, Here is What’s Really Going On
The beauty of this sort of questioning is that it take you full circle in terms of perceptual positions. Starting from being able to see the change you want to create, moving you through to looking at that change through the eyes of the people who will make the change and back to what you need to do to be able to broadcast that message.
No, Really, This is What’s REALLY Going On
But here is the incredibly sneaky thing. By explaining the process in depth in this sort of fashion I have got you to take an observer position. This has several implications well past the obvious explaining how this works.
Think about this for a moment
- You now know about three perceptual positions (yours, your audience, and as an observer of the process) and had explained how you can use them as well as a practical demonstration on how to use them.
- I’ve given you a demonstration of how to use stories in a presentation context. And notice this is a different type of story from the twee audience grabber or morality tale.
- How to covertly open loops to keep your audience engaged (have I made the changes and if so how, has he moved, amongst others questions. Have a quick skim and see how many other open loops you can spot. I think there are an obvious four and two more that you have to be really smart to catch)
- This is a demonstration of how you can use presuppositional questioning to lead your audience. Read back the questions and notice what assumptions you have to hold true to be able to answer the questions at each stage. Then notice what shifts you have to make in your thinking to follow through with those questions. You might want to ask yourself knowing what you now know about presuppositional questioning how much more powerfully can you shift a mindset when you use a sequence of questions? And once you have done with that question, how specifically are you going to use this technique?
- I’ve also given you a demonstration of covertly pre-teaching subjects. For example;without actually explaining what a presuppositional question is how much have I already taught you about how you can use them? But to properly round that off I should refer you to the question, “Now that you know about presuppositional questioning where will you use it first?”
So Now That You Know, Would You Like to be able to do the Same?
This article ended up being a lot longer than I had originally intended but if you would like to
- Be able to design, develop and deliver persuasive content on multiple levels?
- Discover how you can use altered states of consciousness to effect change in your audience?
- Teach, coach, train and support people to make huge changes in their personal and professional lives?
I am currently offering a huge deal on my Hypnotic Presentation Skills Course including some of by best coaching, presentation and belief change tools but also an individual one on one with me via the internet. Click through and find out more but do it now because places are restricted and selling fast. Click through the image below to find out more: