"Influence" by Dr.Robert Cialdini

A MUST READ: This is THE seminal work on the psychology of persuasion. Dr. Cialdini looks at the non rational levers of behavior, our knee jerk reactions. How are they used? What should we be aware of?

He breaks them into 6 principal areas:

1) LIKABILITY. We do activity with people we like. It turns out we like people that have something in common with us. Same college? Same hometown? Same interests? Key is to find that Shared Common Experience.

You need to focus on developing rapport.

2) RECIPROCITY. This has gotten a lot of press lately. Doing favors works. But they need to be Unexpected and Selfless. Clearly people like to return favors. As important is getting them to do you a favor (they sign up on your team forever.)

3) AUTHORITY. People assume that authority figures know best. This is why celebrity endorsements work so well. Use bona fide examples to make your case.

4) COMMITMENT AND CONSISTENCY. Humans don’t like to get caught in a lie. This principal was used against POWs. Very strong.

5) SOCIAL PROOF. We all like to feel we do the right thing for society, right? Keep using your hotel towels instead of getting new ones each day, you’ll see the principal at work.

6) SCARCITY. When something is in short supply, we want it. Hello Beanie Babies!!!!

Please feel free to comment on any of these recommendations and suggest other sources that might be helpful.

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