Natural leaders are quietly convincing and whether they realize it or not use 3 very effective techniques in everyday persuasion. The current podcast episode describes them for you.

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I was congratulating a friend recently for being a leader and she gave me a look that said “who me”? I found it strange that I could see what she could not in terms of the things that go into making someone a good leader. And then it dawned on me that many people who do a great job of leading people don’t look at what they do as leadership but things that come naturally to them. understanding how they do it is something we all could benefit from because true leaders understand persuasion in everyday life.

Just to be clear, to quote from Social Psychology Magazine “the goal of persuasion is to convince the listener to internalize the given argument and adapt this new attitude as a part of their core belief system”. What natural leaders tend to do better than the rest of us is getting others to first listen and then act based on them using techniques that are highly persuasive. The following are three of the most effective techniques natural leaders tend to use without even realizing it:

They tap into an existing need
Being able to present a situation in a way that the person listening places their desire for self-esteem, or simply living up to their full potential right up there with food and shelter, is no easy task, but natural leaders are able to tap into it. The desire for food and shelter are fairly simple because we all get hungry and need a place to sleep. The natural leader goes beyond the usual by creating a mental image that says you need to eat and try this food or sleep in this place. They are able to take basic needs and transform them into something less regular and more special that you need to pay attention to. Being able to tap into our most basic needs requires the special skill of getting into the person’s thinking process (whether the natural leader knows it or not) and begin the process of amplifying a small nugget of desire into something that is so clear it becomes a real thing to the listener. So real in fact it is able to take its place next to the desire for food and shelter.

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They recognize the need to be social
We humans often forget that we are pack animals, meaning we desire to be liked by others in a social network. A short think back to high school will bring up memories of wanting to be part of a group. As we got older we simply learned to cover the desire better. The natural leader taps into those feelings. They know how to make the smallest mouse feel like a lion or want to be. The natural leader does not shy away from constructive criticism but uses it less as a weapon and more as a tool to give their vision of what they think you are capable of achieving. People around them naturally respond to this because it is a very primal need. Once you know you’re not going to starve, then the next step for most people is social standing and the natural leader knows how to make those around them feel that their small effort is worth recognition. That’s why people want to follow them or feel a part of any group they’re in. Being part of the pack is the highest reward that anyone can receive and something we all strive for.

They use loaded words or images
Every second of every day our brain is translating words into images or associations to make meaning of our lives. Nike’s slogan to “Just do it” provides the push you need while also leaving room for you to insert what “it” is. There is also a reason product makers like to use the phrase “New and improved”; what instantly comes to mind is a scientist working away in the laboratory to add that “something” different to a product. If you liked it before then the “improved” says you’re going to like it even more now that it is better. How much better is up to you. This is where natural leaders excel because they use words that create images that inspire and encourage. They create images and associations that cause those around them to want to fill in the blanks and dig a little deeper to agree. I’m constantly talking about the Coactive Dream and natural leaders do this often without thinking and naturally seem to know the loaded words that can move people to action based on their associations.

So I hope my friend reads this post because she does all the things I mentioned and does them effortlessly to tap into the people around her to make them want to get things done. And, she knows who she is…