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The Art of Persuasion by Bob Burg

Summary

The Art of Persuasion includes information from the author’s experiences, stories he has encountered and other similar books such as How to Win Friends and Influence People. Burg discusses the importance of being polite, nice, and patient. While many people are taught these qualities, they often get left behind in various situations. When it comes to interacting with people, we like to believe that logic is supreme, yet the truth is emotion drives much of what we do. If we are striving for a particular outcome, or to get the person to move in a way we desire, it is best to operate upon the associated emotions rather than logic. Part of tying into the emotion is by being polite, nice, and patient. The adage you get more with honey is true. Related is the importance of making others feel special. Ask them questions and be engaged in what they tell you. If they have made a mistake, take care in how that is addressed. Essentially persuasion is about the person being happy with you and therefore more willing to do your request.

How it influenced me

The similarities to How to Win Friends and Influence People are obvious as many things are taken from the book. This book does not offer the research that Influence does, but it still serves as a good reminder on how we interact with others. As I’ve read more on the subject, I’ve seen more instances of what works for me and others, and what is less than effective. Reading this book as helped to heighten those skills. I’ve internally cringed at some approaches I’ve witnessed by others as they try to demean someone, rather than using more tact. A fundamental takeaway is using constraint and tact with people. If someone does wrong by me, there is an initial desire to harm back. This is does not lead to the most effective outcome. Having constraint and tact can lead to a better outcome in the short and long term. Its key to make people feel special, both in that moment, but also overtime as life is longer than one simple moment and you never know when something in the future may prove useful.

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