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Persuasion in the Interpersonal Context. Monica Luangrath & Melissa Green. Interpersonal Persuasion. One person is attempting to induce change in the belief, attitude, or behavior in one other person. Focuses on face-to-face interaction with others. Is purposeful and persuasive.

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Persuasion in the interpersonal context

Persuasion in the Interpersonal Context

Monica Luangrath


Melissa Green

Interpersonal persuasion
Interpersonal Persuasion

  • One person is attempting to induce change in the belief, attitude, or behavior in one other person.

  • Focuses on face-to-face interaction with others.

  • Is purposeful and persuasive.

How to convince people to do whatever you want
How to Convince People to do Whatever You Want

  • YouTube - How To Convince People To Do Whatever You Want

3 contexts of interpersonal persuasion
3 Contexts of Interpersonal Persuasion

  • Organizations

  • Sales

  • Interviews

Persuasive efforts may be characterized as
Persuasive Efforts May Be Characterized As…

  • Dynamic – participants send and receive signals continuously and simultaneously, not static.

  • Interactive – participants influence each other, interdependent, each person assumes roles of both sender and receiver.

  • Proactive – involves the total persons beliefs, attitudes, values, social background, previous transactions, which all influence the interaction.

  • Contextual – environmental and situation factors influence the interaction.

  • Intense – content of the interaction is most often persona, intimate and revealing, risk of rejection, withdrawal, weakness.

8 variables of interpersonal persuasion
8 Variables of Interpersonal Persuasion

  • Verbal

  • Nonverbal

  • Power and Control

  • Compliance-Seeking Messages

  • Conflict

  • Gender Differences

  • Culture and Diversity

  • Leadership


  • Corporate Communication Activities Include:

    • Public Relations, Investor Relations, Employee Relations, Community Relations, Advertising, Media Relations, Labor Relations, Government Relations, Technical Relations, Training and Employee Development, Marketing Communications and Management Communications

    • Internal and external activities

    • Informal and formal communication

    • Upward, downward, and lateral flow of communication

Flow of communication
Flow of Communication

  • Research findings

    • People higher in the organization communicate more while performing their jobs than do people lower in the organization.

    • Job responsibilities significantly impact quality and direction of communication activities.

    • Communication within the organization is usually initiated by someone higher in the organization.

    • People of the same status are more likely to discuss problems and solutions between each other than with someone of higher status.

    • Job satisfaction, trust in superiors and mobility aspirations influence willingness to engage in upward communication.

    • Physical proximity results in more interaction.

Three models of organization employee interaction
Three Models of Organization-Employee Interaction

  • Exchange Model – Organization incentives and rewards provide employee motivation for productivity, employee participation is limited, rules seldom changed.

  • Socialization Model – Organization actively persuades employees about the value of organizational goals and objectives, still little direct employee participation.

  • Accommodation Model – Employees actively participate in shaping organization rules and production goals. They attempt to maximize skills, abilities and unique characteristics of each employee. They become partners in the problem-solving and decision-making activities of the organization.

Four approaches when dealing with superiors
Four Approaches When Dealing with Superiors

  • Ingratiating: employee is overly friendly and warm

  • Tactician: employee uses reason and evidence in support of statements and requests

  • Bystander: employee generally avoids contact with supervisor

  • Shotgun: employee relies on a variety of approaches

Positive interpersonal relationships are crucial to the very survival of individuals, teams and organization, especially when communicating with superiors.

From a strategic approach, Eisenberg & Goodall suggest the tactic of Managing Up – a performance that makes the boss look good. The best way to do this is by leaning how to read the supervisor’s needs and preferences and designing arguments to accomplish goals.

3 classifications of teams
3 Classifications of Teams

  • Project Teams – Organized around the design and development of new products or services.

  • Work Teams – Responsible for the entire task process that delivers a product or service to a client.

  • Quality-Improvement Teams – Focus on customer satisfaction and team performance evaluation leading to reduce costs.

    Most employees in the U.S. work in some type of team based unit.

Organizational roles
Organizational Roles

  • Through interaction with others we develop various organizational roles.

  • Within teams, individuals usually assume one of the three roles…

    • Task Role – members summarize and evaluate ideas, a major part in idea generation and performance progression.

    • Maintenance Role – members are active in reducing tension of conflict to maintain harmony and morale.

    • Self-Centered Role – harmful to teams, individuals dominates all aspects of the project and communication exchanges.

  • Successful teams exhibit mutual respect, high degree of cooperation and self monitoring behaviors that focus on others not self.

  • Organizations1




    • In a sense we are all salespeople

    • The basic appeals, strategies, and tactics of persuasion are essential to successful sales

    • There are multiple approaches to sales (below are 2):

      • Selling Formula Approach – Idea that there are certain product attributes that will be attractive to all individuals regardless of situation or context. Treats all customers alike, sales result form taking customer through a series of mental states: attention, interest, desire, and action.

      • Need-Satisfaction Approach – Assumes that purchases are made to satisfy needs. Requires greater conversation and persuasion skill because in order to make a sale, one must identify the customer’s needs and show hwo the product/services will meet those needs.

    3 phases of the need satisfaction approach to sales
    3 Phases of the Need Satisfaction Approach to Sales

    • Need Development Phase – salesperson encourages customer to discuss his/her needs while actively listening to the information.

    • Need Awareness Phase – salesperson talks more, repeating the customer’s needs and checks to see if customer confirms the info.

    • Need Fulfillment Phase – salesperson demonstrates how the product will fully meet the customer’s needs.

    Dan o hair and gustav friedrich s five basic rules of conduct for successful customer relations
    Dan O’Hair and Gustav Friedrich’s Five Basic Rules of Conduct for Successful Customer Relations

    • Know the Customer

    • Take Responsibility for Customer Satisfaction

    • Avoid Unresponsive Behavior

    • Employ Effective Communication Skills

    • Treat Customers with Respect

    Ralph anderson s seven stage model of personal selling
    Ralph Anderson’s Seven Stage Model of Personal Selling Conduct for Successful Customer Relations

    • Prospecting and Qualifying – identifying potential customers based on a set of criteria (financial capability, social rank, organizational authority, ect)

    • Planning the Sale – includes establishing objectives, choosing a persuasive strategy, planning for an effective and efficient meeting, preparing for customer’s reactions and displaying confidence and professionalism

    • Approaching the Prospect – includes first impressions, firmness of handshake, appearance

    • Making the Sales Presentation – includes articulating the features and benefits of the product/service

    • Negotiating resistance or Objections – try to turn objections into a positive, differentiate between valid about the product/service from excuses for avoiding a decision

    • Closing the Sale – (The Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT) has 7 basic rules for closing a sale:

      • Establish Credibility

      • Know your Product

      • Know your Client

      • Keep it Simple

      • Sell Concepts and Benefits

      • Communicate your Enthusiasm, Your Certainty and Commitment

      • Take a Chance, Ask for the Close

  • Servicing the Account – follows the saying, “it is easier and less expensive to keep customers than to win new customers

  • Other successful selling techniques
    Other Successful Selling Techniques Conduct for Successful Customer Relations

    • Boomerang Technique – turning an objection into a reason for buying a product

    • “Yes, but…” Technique – quickly following an objection with an advantageious or positive attribute of the product

    • Offset Technique – admits the objection is valid but then follows with a more superior point that more than compensates for the original objection

    • “Im Coming to That” Technique – something said by the sales person when they want to finish saying what they are saying before they deal with the objection made

    • Direct Denial Technique – attributing the objection to some misunderstanding or wrong interpretation of information

    How to handle difficult selling situations
    How to Handle Difficult Selling Situations Conduct for Successful Customer Relations

    • Let the Customer Talk

    • Reassure the Customer that their Concerns are Important and Will Be Heard

    • Do not Personalize the Issue

    • Acknowledge when the Customer is Correct

    • Apologize and Provide Immediate Corrective Action when you or the Company is at Fault

    • Ask the Customer for Suggestions on how the Problem/Issue Could be Avoided in the Future

      Always Remember that Persuasion is Based on the Concept of Informed Choice; the Ethical Burden is on the Persuader to Ensure that Products are Fairly Represented!

    Sales Conduct for Successful Customer Relations



      • Here’s a clip on how to use the “law of consistency” to persuade people. People like consistency because it gives them a level of comfort.


    Interviews Conduct for Successful Customer Relations

    • Definition by Charles Stewart and William Cash:

      • “An interactional communication process between two parties, at least one of whom has a predetermined and serious purpose, that involves the asking and answering questions.”


      • “An interview is a formal communication transaction where one or both of the parties have specific behavioral objectives in mind.”

    Types of interviews
    Types of Interviews Conduct for Successful Customer Relations

    • Informational

    • Employment

    • Appraisal

    • Counseling

    • And many, many more…

      In most interviews, the same strategies and tactics are found as in other persuasive contexts, such as public speaking and advertising.

    Persuasion in the interpersonal context
    Example of When Face-to-Face Interview are most Beneficial as Opposed to Instantaneous Communication (e-mail, cell phones, and PDA’s)

    • If it is necessary to verify identity

    • If it is necessary to challenge/question information on the application

    Benefits of face to face interviews
    Benefits of Face-to-Face Interviews as Opposed to Instantaneous Communication (e-mail, cell phones, and PDA’s)

    • Valuable information can be revealed through non-verbal communication.

    • Responses during these interviews are often longer and more detailed.

    • Interviewees are more likely to share personal information.

    Several patterns for developing questions for an interview as the interviewer
    Several Patterns for Developing Questions for an Interview as the Interviewer

    • Topical Pattern – questions flow subject to subject, which is the most common

    • Time Sequence Pattern – develops questions in some chronological order

    • Cause-to-Effect Sequence Pattern – possible causes of an issue are explored, followed by a discussion of effects

    • Problem-Solution Sequence – first there is an attempt to understand a problem and then explore possible solutions

      The purpose of any pattern is to develop mutual understanding and possibly agreement!

    Tips for successful interviewing
    Tips for Successful Interviewing as the Interviewer

    • Keep Smiling, Be Enthusiastic and Honest

    • Make Frequent Eye Contact

    • Remain Positive

    • Less Can Be More

    • Keep Things Conversational

    • Be Prepared to Ask Questions

    • Take Time to Think Before You Respond

    • Don’t Ask About Time Off, Salary, or Benefits Until They Ask

    • Avoid Negative Comments About Former Employers/Colleagues

    • Prepare a Closing Statement/Argument

    Interviews as the Interviewer




    Kathleen reardon s definition of interpersonal persuasion
    Kathleen Reardon’s Definition of Interpersonal Persuasion as the Interviewer

    • The behavior that takes place “when two or a few people interact in a way that involves verbal and nonverbal behaviors, personal feedback, coherence of behaviors, and the purpose of changing attitudes and/or the behaviors of others.”

    Exam discussion questions
    Exam/Discussion Questions as the Interviewer

    • Interpersonal Persuasion is one person attempting to induce change in the belief, attitude, or behavior in one other person and focuses on face-to-face interaction with others. T or F

    • What are the three contexts of Interpersonal Persuasion?

    • What is one benefit of face-to-face interviews?