modest amount of effort (perhaps up 20%) 2. Research: It involves presenting data and relevant cases to support the argument.
Soft Skills for Public Managers 48 • Useful especially for educated people with scientific temperament • Can proceed in systematic manner – even with statistics – to verify trends • 80/20 principle will guide behavior and thought 3. Resonance: It involves using ones likeability and emotional appeal to win support for ones argument. • A view, idea or perspective resonates if it feels right. • Resonance appeals to the affective component of the human brain – not cognitive component • Fit occurs at the subconscious level, and may conflict with reason • Fit occurs if one feels ‘relation’ to the mind changer (i.e., ‘reliable’, ‘respects’ etc.) • 80/20 fully applies here 4. Representational Re-descriptions: It is making a point in many different ways - using humour, stories and pictures; acting out a scenario. • A change of mind becomes convincing if it lends itself to representation in different forms • Especially true, if forms reinforce each other • 80/20 principle is less applicable here 5. Resources and Rewards: It is one using rewards or punishments as incentives to convince someone to adopt his/her viewpoint • Mind changing is more likely to occur when considerable resources can be drawn on • The provision of resources is an instance of positive reinforcement • 80/20 principle is fully applicable here
Handbook on Persuasion Skills 49 6. Real World Events: Using events from the society to make one’s point • A major event, like, September 11 terrorists’ attack on twin-towers in US, tsunami or earthquake may drastically change one’s mind. • Events would push people towards adopting the 80/20 principle from a conventional 50/50 principle 7. Resistance: People have a tendency to develop strong views that are resistant and revert to 50/50 principle • One has to understand the factors that cause people to reject a particular point of view. Such insights can make it easier for one to change his/her mindset. Some levers will work better than others will in government or public service organizations. A manager who relies strictly on his charm to “resonate” with his audience may not get very far. But the use of stories (representational re-description) can be very effective. Managers have to make sure that the stories that they communicate are inclusive rather than built around scare tactics. “Try to incorporate everyone in the same narrative and convince people that we are in this together,” says Gardner. The biggest challenge managers are likely to run up against is fundamentalism—not in the religious sense, but in the form of a conscious decision made by a person not to change his mind. When they encounter people whose opinions are so fixed and unwavering, Gardner advises managers not to waste their time trying to change them.
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