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Influencing to gain buy- in to your ideas 
A Guide For Managers & Business Leaders
1 
CONTENTS Influencing to gain buy-in to your ideas Page 
1. 
Introduction 
2 
2 
Common barriers to influencing 
3 
3. 
...
2 
Influencing to gain buy-in to your ideas 
1) Introduction 
Every day each one of us influences others, be that consciou...
3 
2)Common barriers to influencing 
There is a wide range of factors that can affect your ability to effectively influenc...
4 
3)Choosing the most appropriate influencing style 
When choosing your influencing style REMEMBER everyone is different ...
5 
Here these are explained: 
Taking this one step further we can use these characteristics to understand what motivates o...
6 
4)Matching communication style to effectively influence 
Having identified which communication style your audience uses...
7 
5)Six common influencing strategies 
There are six common influencing strategies people use when trying to get others t...
8 
‘Pull’ Strategy – Putting into Practice 
There are 4 key skills that are required by the influencer in order to success...
9 
6)Ten things skilled influencers actually do 
1) Don’t use Irritators – Certain words and phrases irritate other people...
10 
Founded in 1992 and with offices throughout the UK, Connor has over two decades experience in providing personal Caree...
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Influencing to gain buy-in to your ideas

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Every day each one of us influences others, be that consciously or sub-consciously in order to get our message across. For Managers and Business Leaders in particular, this is an essential skill to have in order to gain buy-in to ideas that will help them to achieve their individual or team objectives.

Depending on HOW we go about influencing our audience, we either succeeded in this, with the result being that our ideas are bought into, or we fail.

This eBook is a guide to effective influencing and how to get buy-in to your ideas.

We will cover:

 Common barriers to influencing
 Choosing the most appropriate influencing style
 Matching communication style to effectively influence
 Six common influencing strategies
 Ten things skilled Influencers actually do

For more information on personal and career development, call Our Career Coaching Service Team today and find out how we can assist your people to develop to shine most brightly, thus maximising the talent within your company and forming the bedrock of your retention and succession planning strategies. Please visit our website: www.connor.co.uk or call us on 01491414010. We’d love to hear from you!

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Influencing to gain buy-in to your ideas

  1. 1. Influencing to gain buy- in to your ideas A Guide For Managers & Business Leaders
  2. 2. 1 CONTENTS Influencing to gain buy-in to your ideas Page 1. Introduction 2 2 Common barriers to influencing 3 3. Choosing the most appropriate influencing style 4 4. Matching communication style to effectively influence 6 5. Six common influencing strategies 7 6. Ten things skilled influencers actually do 9 For more information on personal and career development, call Our Career Coaching Service Team today and find out how we can assist your people to develop to shine most brightly, thus maximising the talent within your company and forming the bedrock of your retention and succession planning strategies. Please visit our website: www.connor.co.uk or call us on 01491414010 - We’d love to hear from you!
  3. 3. 2 Influencing to gain buy-in to your ideas 1) Introduction Every day each one of us influences others, be that consciously or sub-consciously in order to get our message across. Depending on HOW we go about influencing our audience, we either succeeded in this, with the result being that our ideas are bought into, or we fail. But how many of us influence others effectively? In order to be able to do this we must first define what it is ‘influencing’ means: It is important to understand that influencing is closer to ‘persuasion’ and should not be confused with ‘manipulation.’ Manipulation is perceived as behaving in a devious manner to one’s own advantage. Behaving ethically is far more worthwhile than manipulation as it enables your audience to trust and like you, giving you more of what you want if they think you are not just following your agenda and not theirs. This eBook is an introduction to influencing and how to get buy-in to your ideas. We will cover:  Common barriers to influencing  Choosing the most appropriate influencing style  Matching communication style to effectively influence  Six common influencing strategies  Ten things skilled Influencers actually do Influencing to gain buy-in to your ideas Definition of influence: “To affect by gentle action; to exert an influence upon; to modify, bias or sway; to move; to persuade; to induce”
  4. 4. 3 2)Common barriers to influencing There is a wide range of factors that can affect your ability to effectively influence your audience; the best and perhaps most obvious way to identify these is to ask yourself:  When was the last time someone influenced you?  What worked?  When was the last time you didn’t buy into someone’s ideas?  Why was this? However, to add to these personal experiences we have picked the top 8 most common barriers to be aware of that can make your audience less recipient to buying into your ideas/ messages:  Your messages may not be on the other person’s agenda – They may rate what you are communicating to be of less importance in the grand scheme of things in their world at that moment.  Damaged relationships – you may not have a good relationship and therefore lack trust/credibility in their eyes, which is an important part of influencing effectively.  Wrong time, wrong place – You simply may have caught your recipient(s) at an inconvenient time for them.  The other person is too busy – you may not have your audience’s full concentration, they may miss parts of your message and therefore the meaning.  Competing priorities – your recipient’s objective may be the polar opposite or in direct competition with yours, making them inclined to reject your idea/message.  Relationship is new/ forming – Trust between people doesn’t form immediately; if a relationship is brand new, you may not have established the trust required to influence your audience effectively.  You don’t know what motivates them – One of the most important factors to consider when attempting to influence people is the ability to understand them and therefore know what motivates them. Get this wrong and your message could be missed or even misinterpreted.  You don’t understand their communication style – It is vital that you relate to your audience - ‘speak their language’ as it were. To do this it is important to understand what type of communicator they are so that you can adopt the best influencing style to be successful. More about influencing styles on the next page. Influencing to gain buy-in to your ideas
  5. 5. 4 3)Choosing the most appropriate influencing style When choosing your influencing style REMEMBER everyone is different – we each have different motivators, things that are important, ways of communicating, approaches to work, personalities, private lives, history, and in some cases, cultures – all of which will affect our ability to be influenced. To be effective at work, we need to work through others. So it helps to find ways to get on with them, after all, Rapport is the foundation of impact and influence. What makes for good rapport?  Having a successful rapport is adapting your communication style to meet your audience’s style  Rapport is about believing the other person is like you and you believing the same about them  You meet them in their view of the world, not yours With some people we can ‘connect’ very quickly and feel on the same wavelength. When we say that an individual was very quickly able to establish rapport with another person another way of saying this is that the influencer adapted their communication style to meet the needs of the other person(s). Easier said than done as most people prefer to communicate in their preferred style, however, if you communicate in your preferred way only then there are whole sections of the workforce who you will find it harder to build rapport with. Different communication styles There are typically 4 communication styles adopted by people. Each person will generally fall into one of these categories:  Analytical  Driving  Expressive  Amiable Influencing to gain buy-in to your ideas So when it comes to building rapport we can say that you have two choices: 1. Communicate in preferred style your 2. Or communicate in the person’s preferred style other
  6. 6. 5 Here these are explained: Taking this one step further we can use these characteristics to understand what motivates or demotivates each group, what they will respond well to - or perhaps not. Have a look here:
  7. 7. 6 4)Matching communication style to effectively influence Having identified which communication style your audience uses, you should then adapt your communication style to meet their needs. By adopting their preferred style in order to communicate your message you are more likely to influence your audience effectively. Here’s what you can match: Influencing to gain buy-in to your ideas
  8. 8. 7 5)Six common influencing strategies There are six common influencing strategies people use when trying to get others to buy into their ideas. They fall into two categories – the ‘push’ strategy and the ‘pull’ strategy. One however, is far more effective than the other. Below are examples of what we mean along with examples: Both types of strategy have differing outcomes…… Likely outcomes when you ‘push’ for an agreement:  Likely to be lower commitment  There is a need to enforce  WIN/LOSE feelings  Feelings of manipulation  May generate resistance  Needs more effort by the influencer  Often short term results  The insinuation that the message "I'm OK, you're not OK" is acceptable Likely outcomes when you ‘pull’ towards an agreement:  You are seen as helpful  Higher commitment is more likely  A WIN/WIN is more likely  Less bad "aftertaste"  It is self-enforcing  Draws answers/solutions from the other person  Encourages long term results ….It would seem and quite rightly, that the ‘pull’ strategy is the most effective! Influencing to gain buy-in to your ideas
  9. 9. 8 ‘Pull’ Strategy – Putting into Practice There are 4 key skills that are required by the influencer in order to successfully adopt the ‘Pull’ technique – These are: 1. Planning ahead (Although some influencing moments are spontaneous the habit of preparing will stand you in good stead). I. Be clear on what you want to achieve e.g.  What do you want from the other person (a yes to a decision, to do something, to support you in front of others, to provide resource?)  Why is this person important in this situation?  Why is this idea important to you?  What is your key message? (Needs to be short, simple with a clear outline of the impact your idea will have)  What will happen if you don’t succeed, do you have an alternative approach? (No I don’t, yes Plan B is …) II. Think what’s in it for the other person e.g  Does this individual like/respect me? (If not, then my idea must be a real winner for them!)  Will they understand my message? (If not, how do I get them upto speed without patronising them)  Why is this idea important to them?  What is the ideal time/place to approach? (timing is everything, great ideas are rejected if the person is stressed, busy etc)  What is their preferred communication style? (If Driving – keep to the point and talk about results, if Expressive – keep it entertaining and upbeat, if Amiable – appeal to the power of your relationship, if Analytic – give them the facts and evidence). 2. The use of open and probing questions e.g  "What is the problem?"  "What are you looking for?"  "How important is...?" 3. Active listening and summarising e.g  "So what you're saying is..."  Attentive posture and attitude such as, " yes I see" 4. Building and supporting e.g  "That's a good idea"  "and if I could add to your point"  "I'm sure that your idea will work" Utilising these skills will help you to be influence more effectively and avoid falling into using the ‘Push’ method – Try it for yourself!
  10. 10. 9 6)Ten things skilled influencers actually do 1) Don’t use Irritators – Certain words and phrases irritate other people such as “we’ve always done it this way,” “it’s up to the powers that be,” “at the end of the day.” 2) Don’t use Counter-proposals – Introducing these too early when the original idea has not been discussed - these complicate and confuse the other party. 3) Don’t use Defend/Attack spirals – Emotional behaviour, “you cannot be serious,” or attacks the other person, “you really are being very petty about this.” 4) Argument Dilution – The smart influencer thinks of ONE single persuasive reason whereas the poor influencer chooses 3-5 giving the other person the opportunity to dispute the weakest of the many reasons. 5) Behaviour Labelling – People don’t like surprises. Skilled influencers give advance warning of what they are about to say, “I know that you are busy at the moment but we need to talk about deadlines, is now a good time to do so?” 6) Testing Understanding & Summarising – Testing checks to establish whether a previous statement has been understood. Summarising is a compact re-statement of several previous points. 7) Seeking Information – Skilled influencers seek out more information than the average influencer by asking more quality questions. 8) Tough on tasks, soft on people – This means adopting rigorous problem solving techniques whilst being very supportive of the person’s feelings. Separate the people from the problem. 9) Use Objective Criteria – Skilled influencers when they have agreed a way-forward agree on a small number of success criteria that will measure the idea that you have both agreed. 10) Feelings Commentary – Research shows that skilled influencers are more likely to give information about their feelings than average influencers, e.g. “I accept your information in good faith, but I feel uncomfortable about one or two aspects. Can I share these with you?” The work of psychologists such as Carl Rogers has shown that the expression of feelings is directly linked to the establishment of TRUST. Influencing to gain buy-in to your ideas
  11. 11. 10 Founded in 1992 and with offices throughout the UK, Connor has over two decades experience in providing personal Career Coaching support businesses of all sizes across the UK ranging from SME’s to FTSE 100 corporates. Our Career Coaching Service is a sequence of bespoke meetings, conducted with a peer level consultant, where we help your employees better understand their knowledge, skills and aspirations in either your business or an external l business context setting. Through pragmatic interventions we engage with employees to identify the environment and role that will make them shine most brightly, thus maximising the talent within your company and forming the bedrock of your retention and succession planning strategies. Companies who have used our service have said the following about Connor: About Connor ‘I just wanted to let you know that I have been receiving fabulous feedback on the service/support you are providing our people. The service has significantly increased our talent retention as well as employee morale.’ – HRD Technology research sector What our service gives you We will:  Improve people performance  Improve employee engagement  Increase the resilience of your people  Deliver excellent ROI to your business  Our service will form the bedrock of your retention and succession planning strategies We appreciate that every intervention is unique, so we would welcome the opportunity to talk to you about your specific situation. Call Sam Eaton from our Career Coaching Team today on 01491 414 010 or visit www.connor.co.uk. We are not just a Career Coaching Provider…… We also supply our clients with:  Consulting and HR Support  Strategic HR Services  Training & Development  Executive Coaching  Professional Outplacement  Management Outplacement  Executive Outplacement Look out for more from Connor Can we help you? Call Sam today to find out more! Call Sam: 01491 414 010 Email: sam@connor.co.uk Twitter: https://twitter.com/Connor_HR Website: www.connor.co.uk

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