Regardless of whether you are seeking to win over business partners, investors, or a new acquaintance, then persuasive speaking skills are an essential must. Its really all about how quickly and effectively you can paint a picture in the mind of the other party that reflects the interest of both parties, the purpose being, to cause a simultaneous phenomena where both parties “get the picture”. In the same manner, unpersuasive speech is comparable to painting a messy and chaotic canvas. Doubtless to say, any aspiring entrepreneur best endeavor to master this versatile, practical and influential skill to achieve any level of success.
However, as one may know, with all valuable assets in life, obtaining them is quite an arduous journey. Mastery of the art of persuasion is no different. Nevertheless, I still hold the view that anyone can attain a level of persuasiveness through diligent practice and training. Moreover, persuasiveness is not trickery, nor does it require invoking selfish and scandalous schemes to conquer and manipulate the other party. Here are a few tips, if put into practice, will enable you to acquire a clean, honest, and sincere type of persuasiveness that will produce positive results, and possibly, much more:
1. Speak with Confidence.
If you want to be convincing, you must be convinced that what you have to say has value, and this is done first by having confidence in the knowledge and abilities you possess.
If you are like me, I lack self-confidence when I speak Chinese, in order to overcome this weakness, I employ the “fake it till you make it”principle. Act like you are already confident. Show confidence when you walk, talk, even in the way you dress. Slowly, but surely, confidence will be on you like white on rice.
2. Speak with Sincerity
Being persuasive is not equivalent to being deceptive. Apply this simple rule before attempting to convince other people: Would I reasonably and honestly accept the words coming out of my mouth if I were in the other party’s shoes? Better yet, imagine the other party as a love one such as your girlfriend, wife, best friend, mom, dad, etc. You wouldn’t want to give useless words to these individuals, in the same manner, use this method to not give %$!@ to the person your trying to persuade.
3. Get to the Point
Build the habit of getting to the point every time you speak. Otherwise, with every passing second you waste on purposeless words and sentences, the credibility and influence of your words rapidly decreases.
4. Display Professionalism
Professionalism is first taking yourself seriously before people take you seriously. An important factor that determines the level of professionalism one possesses is how well one is prepared at any given time to accomplish one’s immediate goals. This involves being knowledgeable, since knowledge is convincing. Lastly, professionalism involves proper execution of ones prepared knowledge.
5. Speak with Simplicity
You have all heard of K.I.S.S. (Keep it simple stupid) This concept is very relevant to effective communication and persuasion. Leave those profound words to your English professors. Whatever in written or spoken language, make the effort to employ straightforward language to help you easily interact with the audience, simultaneously, simple speech prevents you from sounding pompous If you have trouble, imagine you the type of language you would use when reconciling with a friend, when you talk to a primary school student, etc.
6. Communicate with Transparency
If you look like you are hiding something, then people will naturally doubt you. Therefore, try your best to be transparent as possible in front of an audience. Again, this involves committing to a life of excellency through the commitment of maintaining a honest spirit in every encounters in life. One faucet of honesty is to admit your shortcomings, this can be done in a humorous way, such as confessing to an embarrassing detail about yourself. It’s a way of disarming the other party’s defense, thus, opening a more fluent channel of communication, hence, increasing the chance of winning them over.
*These experiences were made possible by the Gilman Scholarship