Persuasion has become an important part of modern life. It is used to achieve goals and desires and can be intentional. However, people tend to use different methods and approaches to get similar results. Persuasive tools, practices, and skills are used, learned, and trained by some people to perform specific tasks or achieve goals. Each of the approaches is determined by a set of skills and activities, but not every person is suitable for the same options, and due to this, knowledge and understanding of one’s strengths are necessary.
The video, which summarizes Dr. Robert Cialdini’s book, describes six principles and terms that relate to persuasion. These principles include scarcity, reciprocity, consensus, authority, consistency, and liking (Influenceatwork, 2012). At the same time, the article by Jason Nazar highlights similar elements, such as the emphasis on how people might be interested in persuasion. This refers to the person’s personal preference, perception, and beliefs. This principle includes the elements from the video, such as liking and authority, which imply that people are better at accepting persuasion from those they like and those they perceive as experts or management (Influenceatwork, 2012). In addition, both in the video and in the article, it is mentioned that Scarcity generates desire and action. However, Nazar’s article provides a more comprehensive overview of the topic of persuasion. The article additionally includes supporting skills required for persuasions such as behavioral flexibility, energy transfer, communication, being prepared, and calmness (Nazar, 2018). All these skills refer to the fact that the position of a person is transmitted to the interlocutor, as confidence and expertise are felt in the conversation.
An article written by the Mind Tools Team similarly to Nazar confirms that qualities such as emotional intelligence and negotiation skills help when persuasion is required. The authors use different terminology but come to similar explanations of the characteristics that a person should have, whose purpose is to convince of something. The Mind Tools team article also includes the Persuasion Tools Model. This model consists of four elements, including emotion, logic, bargaining, and compromise. Along with emphasizing the advantages of using the model, the article, in contrast to other sources of information, also mentions disadvantages. These disadvantages include the inability of many people to determine the strongest approach that works for them (The Mind Tools Team, n.d.). Each person is more prone to certain methods, while others will be ineffective. However, it seems to me that through the method of testing each approach through social interaction, anyone will be able to choose a suitable option or a mix of them. In further research, it would be worth mentioning specific key point indicators to measure the effectiveness of the chosen approach.
The book by Dainton & Zelley is the most comprehensive and detailed. The information begins with a historical background and a complete definition of persuasion, which suggests that it is a method of influencing others. Nazar’s article does not define persuasion but provides additional information, including an explanation that persuasion is not manipulation. The main difference is that manipulation is aimed at personal gain, while persuasion at something beneficial for both (Nazar, 2018). Attitude types can also be directed towards rejection, acceptance, and noncommitment, as per the book.
The book by Dainton & Zelley highlights the importance of behavior and discusses theories. These theories include the elaboration likelihood model, social judgment theory, narrative paradigm, and cognitive dissonance (Dainton & Zelley, 2017). Theories discuss the question of persuasion in more detail while looking at it from different angles. While the articles and videos are more focused on the generally accepted inclusions of this behavior, the book takes a more scientific approach. Moreover, the book provides additional information and terminology to explain each of the theories. However, there are similarities in the book; for example, social judgment theory also says that the possibility of influencing a person partly depends on his own judgments and perceptions of the importance of another person. Cognitive dissonance implies opposition of beliefs, narrative paradigm suggests communicating through storytelling, and elaboration likelihood model uses reasoning and motivation to validate its position. The book additionally provides examples and statistics regarding each issue, which allows one to understand it in detail.
However, it is worth considering that society influences human behavior. People tend to act collectively, and therefore groups can have a direct impact on the individual. Such a process is being studied by Neuroscience (Falk & Scholz, 2018). However, this suggests that the social context must be taken into account even when coercion of only one person is required. This aspect is also mentioned in the Jason Nazar article.
The theories provided in the articles are easily applicable in real life. For example, for myself personally, I understand the version of the logic described in the article by Mind Tools would fit the most since it is based on argumentation with the help of specific facts and data. I always do research and gather information, and if in my career I need to persuade a person to follow a certain point of view or do something, I will use scientific arguments. In addition, it was helpful for me to learn that confidence is transmitted to the interlocutor. This will allow me to present myself in the right way to achieve the desired result.
In conclusion, all sources of information used in the essay are effective in conveying information about persuasion. However, the book contains a complete overview, as it includes both historical background and detailed information on the research issue. All materials are applicable to real life, but the articles are most adapted for easy understanding and interpretation.
Dainton, M., & Zelley, E. D. (2017). Applying communication theory for professional life: A practical introduction. SAGE. Web.
Falk, E., & Scholz, C. (2018). Persuasion, influence, and value: Perspectives from communication and social neuroscience. Annual Review of Psychology, 69, 329-356. Web.
Nazar, J. (2018). The 21 principles of persuasion. Forbes. Web.
The Mind Tools Team. (n.d.). The persuasion tools model. Mind Tools. Web.
Influenceatwork. (2012). Science of persuasion [Video]. YouTube.