Common Triggers for Influence
Our next section is on common triggers for influence. This comes from the world of elicitation, so this is the world of spies and espionage and corporate espionage. So I'm going to give you a little bit of an elicitation 101 as to where all this comes from, and then I'll explain to you how we are going to use these techniques, just simply in a different way. So the basis of elicitation is getting information without the other person realizing that you have the mission to get information. So we are very familiar with interviews, and an interview is I ask you a question and you respond. However, something very interesting psychologically happens when we are asked a question. Within milliseconds, our brain goes through a series of filters. Why do they want to know that information? What am I comfortable sharing with them? Will they judge me if I tell them? How can I edit this to make it more socially acceptable? Can they use this information against me? What are the emotional stakes behin...
d me answering this question? All of that happens within (claps) a second. So we have a force field that goes up when we are asked questions, especially probing questions. Again, that's why rapport is so important, because a therapist asks very probing questions. Very probing questions. And if they, if the client does not feel rapport with that therapist, then they will lie, or they will not share, or they will hold things back. So in understanding this psychological phenomenon that happens when we're asked questions, clearly a spy can't walk up to a nuclear missile silo and go, hey, how many of those do you guys have? (audience laughs) They know that they aren't going to get that information. So there has to be more of a sly, covert way to go around this force field. And that is where the world of elicitation comes from, is that it's a seemingly normal conversation where the spy can get information that they need. So in the world of elicitation, they might have a specific hit list of things that they need. We need to know how much, how many weapons that they have. We need to know how big their army is. We need to know when they plan to deploy. So this is their hit list. Thankfully, our hit list is not that... You know, high-pressure and scary. Our hit list instead is going to be the influential vibes. What are their values? What are their identifiers? What are their beliefs? That's our general hit list. And the BAK. So that's continuously what you're going to elicit for. Also things that you're potentially going to elicit for is what's your budget? Because when you directly ask that, what's your budget? You sometimes get the little dancing answer of, well, you know, it changes every time, and we review it next month, so just tell us, and... So we get the dancing answer around that. So that means that you need to be able to use the world of elicitation to potentially get that. So beginning elicitation means that you understand the common desires and tendencies that we as a human race share. These are common things that you see practically everywhere. And then knowing how to leverage those desires and tendencies. So I refer to these typically as motivational triggers. You can view them however you like. But this is the basis of elicitation. There are about 10 desires and tendencies in the world of espionage. Today I'm sharing with you the four that I find to be the most obvious and easy to leverage, all right? So the first one, aww. (audience laughs) Is the desire for recognition and appreciation. This perhaps is one of my favorite lessons because it really does embody bringing the dark arts of influence into the light. The reason why con artists are so successful is because they make you feel so special. They make you feel like you're the only person in the room. They validate you. They, you feel like you're finally seen. Oprah Winfrey has a wonderful phrase that she's shared many times that over the years of her many, many interviews from, you know, Beyonce to rapists, to criminals, to all these people, they all share one thing, and it's they ask the questions, do you see me, do you hear me, and does what I say matter? Do you see me, do you hear me, and does what I say matter? The problem that happens in normal everyday life is that all of us are actively wanting to be appreciated, but so few of us are actively appreciating. All of us have this deep desire to be seen, to be heard, to be told that we're worthy, but so few of us are giving that to others. I see you. I hear you. I get it. This is taking the dark arts of what a con artist does and bringing it into the light and connecting with people in a powerful way. So how a con artist might take the recognition and appreciation side of things and validate in order for a malicious intent, how can you validate your mark? Again, this is when we turn to the influential vibes. So their values, their beliefs, how can you validate them? And also just some, and the rapport building, listening to them, validating what they're saying. We can also leverage as this, leverage this later on when we talk about the specific elicitation techniques, but this is perhaps one of my favorite, most common triggers and desires that we as positive influencers can leverage. The second is the desire to be seen as an expert. So this doesn't necessarily mean that we desire to be an expert in everything, but all of us own an expertise in something. Clearly what I own my expertise in is communication. I can chat up all day long about this. Like, if somebody says, tell me about your thoughts on communication, I'm like, well, sit down, sweetheart. (audience laughs) We're having a chat. Other people, like, we have photographers in the studio audience as well as who are watching from home. I guarantee that if somebody was interested in photography and gave you the opportunity to teach and share your insights and just let you, like... Our photographer in the studio, she's smiling and nodding her head already. Like, she just lit up already, like, if they, if you can imagine just being able to teach people and share your passion for something. Oh my gosh, what a gift. What a gift. Sometimes there are also... I wanna point this out before I forget. We had Erica and Chris up here, and she tried to leverage this technique with Chris by saying, and you'll get the opportunity to share your stories and teach them things. He backed away from that. This was not a strong trigger for him. Like, and maybe it's because he doesn't feel like he owns expertise in that, because it wasn't maybe one of his big passions. But in that moment, that wasn't the right trigger. It wasn't the effective trigger for that situation. Now, myself being a speaker and a writer who knows a lot of industry experts, oh my gosh, this is the most obvious freakin' trigger in the world. Tell me about this. If you go to a lot of these conferences, and we'll do, like, a round table of some sort, you can easily tell when this is somebody's trigger, because they jump in, they do most of the talking, they eat up most of the air time, they know everything about this subject. So that is a very clear indicator of this is a strong trigger. When, I want to tie this back into influential vibes. Remember the E is emotions, positive state, negative state. Ah, here's the ahas.
See, this is why I like the connect portion, 'cause the dots start to connect. So if I need to put somebody in a positive state and this is their trigger, then I play the role of the student. And I'll show you different ways that you can do that in the upcoming techniques. And we had a question, Chris?
Actually, it just occurred to me as you were talking, you used two different words.
You said share your story and teach.
And I had different reactions to each one.
So knowing your mark, like, and knowing whether they like the spotlight on them or the spotlight's on teaching a class.
Like, share your story is, like, eh, like, teach, I was like, oh, that actually was a great word.
And I didn't think about the difference there. It's the same thing, but there's a difference there that I hadn't gotten before.
Yes, yes, you're absolutely right. It's very nuanced. And I agree. I would almost feel the same way.
Like, if someone says, come share your story, I'm like, (mumbles).
But if you teach us about...
Oh yeah, all right!
So that, I love that you shared that. There are different nuances to that, so fantastic insight. The next desire or tendency is the tendency to be polite and helpful. So we have seen how this tendency can work against us already in our workshop, like when she prompted Chris and was trying to figure out how to close it out by saying, so does that sound interesting? And this is a very common question that people use. I hope everybody after today's workshop knows, do not ask that question. You will get this, you will trigger this tendency and get a polite response. Now, the polite response may be true. They may say yes and mean it, but they also very well could say yes and not. So we need more quality closing questions when we reach to that closing. So we've seen how this works against us. It also works for us when we authentically, genuinely need help. We as influencers actually hinder ourselves by not simply asking for help. Sometimes the best path is the easiest, most straight one. We sometimes overcomplicate an influential intention by looking for ways around, so that way we don't have to honestly and authentically say, I need your help. And I feel like knowing that this is a very common tendency within our society, that it almost empowers us to ask help more often. Again, I love how we can bring these dark arts into the light. Because con artists, again, leverage this against us. They say, I just need your help, and then it leads to a negative conclusion. How about if we ask for help and it leads to a positive conclusion? The next one is the desire to be a part of something bigger slash the desire for significance. The desire to be part of something bigger or the desire for significance. We all get wrapped up in our daily lives of, oh, I gotta send this email, then I gotta return that call, and then I gotta make sure that that document is right, and I gotta fill, and we get into the minutia of our daily lives. But there is a core part of us, of the human race, that we want to be a part of something bigger. We want to be helpful within the tribe that we have, the community, or the ideals that we aspire to. People in the military very rarely will say they do what they do for themselves. They do it for country. They do it for their fellow soldiers. The sacrifices that they take is not for themselves. It's for their brothers and sisters in arms. That is a very clear hook of significance that they have attached. They are willing to sacrifice for that significance. We here sacrifice for that significance, as well, in different ways. We have many entrepreneurs in the room and people who are watching. How much have you sacrificed for the significance of this company that you are building or the army that you want to create and the following and the tribe, or the movement, or the core of your business, that your business is solving this huge global issue? That's your significance, hook, and you are demonstrating that through your work. Everybody has this desire for something bigger. Figuring out what that is, for some people their bigger, being a part of something bigger means family. They will sacrifice for family. And so that could potentially be an influential hook, that instead of your influential intention serving them, it's how does this serve your family? Is this, I'm feeling like there's some ahas happening in the room, yes? Okay. Okay, we talked about that. And so again, you can easily go back to the influential vibes to see if this is a potential trigger that you can use. Any questions about this thus far or in the chat room or anything? Are we good?
Yeah, well, we have some questions that just came up on some of the things we touched on earlier in the segment. When we, for instance, when we were doing the exercises here, I think it was important that you asked the people here, well, what do you already know about that person?
So we have a lot of people in the chat room who are curious about when you know nothing about the person at all at these initial networking events, and yes, people who are at the bar trying to meet people for the first time when they have no background information at all on these people, are all of these things still in play there even when you know nothing about the person?
Absolutely. So that's when if you know nothing about this person. You haven't been prepped that you're going to meet them. You haven't seen them online in any way. It's purely a first-time interaction. I bet you can tell more about that person than you're giving yourself credit for. How are they dressed? Are they relaxed? Are they sporty? Are they looking very posh and elegant? Do they look more high-maintenance or low-maintenance? What is their posture? Do they have confidence? Are they shy? What can you tell by how they move? Are they feel, do they feel balanced? Are they shying away? Are they engaging people? These are all certain things that you can tell about that person. And so that's just simply when you have to put on your Sherlock Holmes hat...
...and deduce what you can from the scenario. And when it is a first-time meeting, always lean towards confidence and charisma. So having your own body language be open and secure and strong. I don't mean forceful, but just simply grounded. And, hello! (man laughs) And smile. When you're comfortable and your intention is to put other people in comfort, then you can create that rapport, and then once you have that rapport, then you can go into some elicitation techniques or conversation to elicit some of those values. Again, people love to talk about themselves. Let them. (man laughs) Great question, great question. Yes.
And in a scenario where you don't know that much about the person, but you're gathering it, is it important that your ask at the end is small?
It depends. Because... And, oh, beautiful question. So if you, it's a new relationship and the dynamic isn't solid, and your personal big ask is inconsequential to them, then I could go for the big ask. If it is a big step for them, then I would create a series of yeses to build up to that. With that said, if your influential intention clearly hooks into this, of significance, people will do whatever it takes to reach this goal, to make sure that this is validated and reinforced. So if their family is under threat, then, and for $50,000 you can fix everything about that? Done. So it's kind of a balance game of how much of a sacrifice is it to them and then how much does it tie into their deep held beliefs. Same with your roller coaster scenario. It was more difficult for us to get you to the roller coaster 'cause that's a deep-seated issue with you. But if it was, hey, why don't we see a romantic comedy at the movies, not as big of a deal.
[Woman In Audience] Right.
So it would take probably more yeses to get you to the roller coaster, and we can just do one yes for the movies. Make sense? Great question. Okay, so I like to view the world of elicitation as it's ways to initiate connection as well as eliciting influential intelligence. These techniques I have found help me in those scenarios where I don't know anybody and I have to blindly approach people, but they also give me a great tools for trying to find those influential vibes and BAK and all that other information. So the first one is the provocative statement. Basically... Well, first of all, the provocative statement is exactly what it sounds like. It is a statement designed to provoke a response. Now, we have social scripts, like, how are you? Fine. How's your day going? Good. Good, glad to hear it. How many times have we gone through this conversation? The challenge with provocative statements is to break away from the norm. When something is different, when something comes out of left field, when something is interesting, we engage, because it means that we can turn off this subconscious, you know, autopilot response of, good, fine, thank you. (squawking noises) All right? Bringing this into examples in the real world, what does a, what is the function of a pickup line? To come across as different, to be interesting, to pick her up. It, and pick up means to engage her, to get her engaged. And I say her because generally the man is doing the picking up of the woman, but, you know, everybody can pick up everybody. So that is the function of pickup lines. Pickup lines are basically provocative statements. If you have studied or read anything about pickup artists, there is something that they do that is known as peacocking. And peacocking means they, there are different versions of this. One is where they put on practically what looks like a Halloween costume. I've seen guys with a big old, like, top hat and a cane and some flashy necklaces and jewelry on every ring. (audience laughs) And something flashy and a mohawk and all, just, it's just, like, provocative statement, provocative statement everywhere. That's known as peacocking. But then if you bring that down to a much more kind of normal level of pickup artistry, it's having something on you that can provoke conversation. So an interesting watch. One of my friends wears a wooden watch, and it provoked an interesting conversation because I noticed it. It's, I've never seen a wooden watch before, and it looked like this unfinished maple type of, and I was like, that's so interesting. I'm not even a watch person, but it stood out. So pickup artists will, you know, wear a flashy jacket or anything that makes them stand out. This is the nonverbal communication way of a provocative statement. So if you want to get attention, be noticed, take a look at what you're communicating with what you're wearing, and, but then also look towards the provocative statement. One of my friends was born on Christmas, and so he hates that he has this provocative statement in the bank. On a date when somebody says, like, oh, what are you doing next week? Oh, actually, my birthday's coming up. Oh, but it's Christmas coming up. Yeah, I was born on Christmas. And it provokes this conversation that he has had 50,000 times. (audience laughs) But it's a built-in provocative statement. My hair is a built-in provocative statement. (audience laughs) For girls with curly hair. We get into conversations about what product do you use, how do you pin it up at night, how do you get the... This is... See, Chris, (audience laughs) of all people in the audience, is going, what? I don't understand this.
I don't understand at all.
Why would you talk about hair? I feel like we're in different dimensions here, Chris. (laughs)
Just a little bit. (laughs)
All right, so, so the provocative statement works towards just simply breaking the social norms. And we can workshop through that later on after we've gone through our other techniques. The next one is naivete. Well, let me go towards the next slide to explain why, how naivete is so important. First of all, naivete means that you are taking a step down from where you are placing your mark. Meaning, like, you're putting them up on a pedestal and you are going to be the student. This technique can be very difficult for some people because their ego is way too strong, and therefore they cannot feel comfortable or allow themselves to come across as dumb or stupid. Now, I'm not saying play dumb. I'm not saying, like, (high-pitched voice) oh my God, (audience laughs) like, the watch, how does the watch work? We're not saying that you need to, like, Marilyn Monroe it up or anything. It's just that you say, I don't know as much about this. Can you teach me? Which means in order to do so, you need to be able to take part of one of my favorite influential techniques, ego suspension. As you know, I come from the world of theater, and in theater and the dramatic arts, there's a common phrase of temporary suspension of disbelief. Meaning that when you go to the theater, you know that you're not watching a scene in Spain. You know that this is a set. But in order to enjoy this experience, you're going to temporarily suspend your disbelief. Even when you go and see an action movie, you know that Keanu Reeves cannot jump off a building onto a bus, hit two guys right between the eyes, and then hop on a motorcycle and then jump across a mountain, but you still enjoy the movie because you are temporarily suspending your disbelief. I want you to take the same concept and in your influential conversations, strategically and consciously temporarily suspend your ego. Just like it's a little red balloon above you. It's still there. You can still, you know, have your ego later. You can still, after you win an influential conversation, in your car go, yeah, I got that one! That's awesome! Totally cool. But in an influential conversation, I want you to be able to... Part of what ego suspension means is, we talked about it earlier in the last session of suspending your judgments, suspending your own beliefs around something. Like, even when somebody says an identifier of, oh, I'm so fat. Even if you don't believe it in that moment, I mean, you can choose to combat that identifier, but if it's not going to serve this particular influential conversation, you might just suspend your belief and understand that they might see themselves in a different way than you do, and work within their reality towards your influential intention. So temporarily suspending that ego, which means that... Using the technique of naivete means that you have to be able to just relax, and even if you know everything about the subject, I have had so many conversations with people who know things about communication, and I just simply wanna learn what, I wanna know what they know. So I'm like, oh, that's interesting. And I don't combat them with, well, actually this study says this and this study says that. I'm trying to get a sense of their playing field. We've had two questions. First one?
That was a really interesting example, and I just wanna clarify. Ego suspension is almost like saying you're stepping into their reality?
It can be.
Yeah, so that came from our earlier session.
[Woman In Audience] Okay.
That we work within the reality of the mark...
[Woman In Audience] Okay.
...for that moment.
So for example, interrogators, when they're interrogating a suspect, will say, you know, I really understand how this might've happened.
[Woman In Audience] Um-hum, um-hum.
You know, if I, if she had thrown pots and pans at me, as well, I don't know, I might've gotten angry, and I understand that.
[Woman In Audience] Um-hum. Okay, got it.
Same with hostage negotiators. Hostage negotiators are very skilled at this. Like, look, I know you've got the people in there. I know, I mean, you're in a tight spot. I completely understand, like, if I had lost my job, as well, who knows what I would've done. And I understand you're really doing this for your family. You're just trying to get money for your family, and I wanna make sure that that happens. I wanna make sure that everybody's safe. I wanna make sure that your family's taken care of. In order for that to happen, we just have to work together. We have to collaborate on this. When the hostage negotiator, in his or her own reality, is probably thinking, what the hell are you doing, dude, taking people in a bank and holding them at gunpoint?
[Woman In Audience] Yeah, yeah.
That's crazy! But they're not gonna say that. They work within the reality of the person that they're trying to connect with. And we had another question? Yes, Chris.
So for naivete, I understand the technique, and it's really good for allowing people to show their expertise and for learning. But how do you balance that to also maintain peer relationships with people, right? So that it... So that you are still on an equal playing field, even though you can learn from them in particular subjects, right? 'Cause I think it's, it seems like that's a nuanced thing that I don't know that I understand.
It can be. My first reaction to that, it seems like your ego is still kinda speaking towards that.
Yeah. So you're still seeing how playing the card of naivete and then teaching diminishes you in status with them. To which I would kind of broaden the perspective and say I don't think that it does.
Because what we're doing is we are leveraging one of the other triggers of the desire to be seen as an expert.
So what you're doing is putting them in a positive state.
And that is, that puts you almost in a power role, 'cause you are controlling this state. Then when they teach the thing that, you know, you need from them, then you can give them applause by saying, that's so interesting. Thank you so much for sharing that. And in whatever way or phrase that you are comfortable with. But acknowledge and validate their expertise. They actually are enjoying this interaction so much that they don't see you ask, you know, an ant to step on. They see you as, I enjoy that conversation with that person. You can then lead the conversation towards... And again this is mostly focused for that influential intention. Towards the influential intention that you have for this. And so if you have additional information, I wouldn't necessarily wrap it in the paper of... Oh, that's great. You taught me a lot of things. Now here's some stuff you didn't know. (audience laughs) Then you just diminished everything that you did before.
Yeah, probably, sure.
So instead you might put them in the positive state to get them to teach you something and then engage in a conversation back and forth.
'Cause more than likely they will realize, and I've seen this happen so many times. They will realize that they've been doing so much talking that then they will come with a question following it, like, oh my gosh, I feel like I've been talking forever. Tell me about yourself, or tell me about... And that's what gets the ball rolling. So, great question. Yes.
[Woman In Audience] So we talked about, like, curious conversations yesterday.
Is the naivete, like, a curious conversation where maybe you already have the information?
Um, it, well, the naivete you can use in the curious conversation where you're just trying to get them to talk so you can learn a bunch of stuff. You can use it in the influential conversation to put them in a positive state and applaud them for their expertise and then transition into your influential conversation.
[Woman In Audience] Okay.
So there's the two ways, absolutely. Okay, the next one that we have is quid pro quo. So we're going to talk about the law of reciprocity in our influence session, but quid pro quo is basically the linguistic version of law of reciprocity. If I give you a little bit of something, you're likely going to give me a little bit of something in return. This ties actually into the tendency or the desire to be seen as an expert, because you can use the quid pro quo to leverage, this is another tendency of gossip. People like to be in the know, so if you share a little bit of perceived gossip, then they might come back with additional information and gossip. So to tie this in as to how this might work in the real world is in corporate espionage, if somebody's trying to get information about the upcoming product that a company has, they might say, well, you know what, I heard that Acme Company is coming up with such and such and such and such, and it's, it could really blow the roof off of this place. That's a little bit of gossip. It makes you feel like I am in the know about something and you potentially aren't. And if your tendency and a trigger of yours is gossip and desire to be seen as an expert in that kind of field, you might say, oh yeah, no, I've heard about that. It's not gonna be nothing. Besides, what you really don't know is XY and Z company is coming up with such and such. That's the information that the corporate spy needed. You, that's exactly what an elicitation conversation sounds like. So how you can leverage that is by, oh, you know, I heard so and so is working on such and such, and they say, oh yeah, well, I, that would be great. I really would enjoy such and such. I mean, they, it just sparks this conversation. Also, the quid pro quo plays into the tendency to be polite and helpful. If I have given you something of perceived value, then you are going to give me something of perceived value in return. So it's the linguistic version of law of reciprocity, which we're going to talk about in the next section. So the next technique is flattery. So flattery is fairly simple and straightforward. I feel like we all know what flattery is. Again, it, what we're talking about here, though, is authentic flattery. So really give a compliment to somebody that you genuinely believe. I like your watch. You're so easy to talk to. I'm always so happy when I see you. Any of those genuine compliments. This is the technique that you use to leverage the desire for recognition and appreciation. Simple, straightforward, right? Okay. The next one is one of my favorites 'cause it catches you by surprise, and it is feigned disbelief. So what we've talked about thus far is creating rapport with people in order to get information. What I love about this technique is it kinda turns it on its head that you can strategically create an argument in order to get the result that you want. And I don't mean a full argument where you are in complete disrapport, if that's even a word. Made it up. Put it in the dictionary now. (audience laughs) But just simply to get somebody to disagree with you on something, because as Sherlock Holmes said in one of the iterations of the Sherlock Holmes, that people don't like to tell you things. They love to contradict you. So if somebody is an expert in their field and you want to... This could be a way, if you don't wanna play the naivete card, Chris, this could be where you could go, is if somebody's an expert in health and wellness, you could say, oh, you know, I know that you teach XY and Z's techniques in losing weight. I actually read a really interesting article that I think is totally legit that kind of contradicts that. And you're laughing 'cause you know their response is going to be...
Oh no, let me tell you. (Chris laughs) And then they give away their knowledge about this area.
So it's a little bit of an argument. It's a disagreement. But you're still not breaking rapport. So if you choose this technique, your words are going to be creating the disagreement, which means I really want your rapport to be very agreeable, amicable, open, and mirroring them. So you're kind of having to balance a few things, which makes it really freakin' cool. Also, this plays into the desire to be seen as an expert, is that when you contradict somebody, they will really amp up their expertise. Like, if somebody were to say to me, oh, I just think that influence stuff is hullabaloo. That's just crazy talk. I'd be like, are you kidding me? And then I'll just rant away. Also, when you use the feigned disbelief, if you are creating that little argument, I want to make sure that you know to, at the end of it, if your influential intention is to continue a relationship with them, make them feel good, the end of this technique must wrap up with, oh, you know, I never really thought of it that way. That's so interesting. Yeah, and I'm really happy that we talked this through. I wouldn't have known that otherwise. And it plays to the desire to be an expert. So you strategically create this argument in order to get the information and ultimately build more rapport 'cause you put them in a positive state. Yes, question?
Are there certain personality types or people or values held that you just wanna stay away from this?
Well, there's not a 100% rule.
[Woman In Audience] Yeah.
I would say you want to make sure that you're in rapport with them first.
[Woman In Audience] Okay.
I mean, I can't stress that enough.
[Woman In Audience] Yeah.
The first step is rapport.
The first step is rapport. The first step is rapport. Because then when you challenge them in the conversation, they feel comfortable with it. I have seen people use this completely wrong in events. So the speaker speaks, gets offstage, somebody else in the audience has a strong desire to be seen as an expert, and they subconsciously and unwittingly, mistakenly think, oh, if I go up to the speaker and tell them about this new thing, they are going to see me as an expert and see me as an equal. So they go up to them and say, that was really interesting what you said, but did you know that there's this study that came out that said this, that, and that? And unwittingly and against their influential intention, they have created this scenario, rather than building up the rapport and then coming in with this. So you can see how people have good intentions, but without this information, without these strategies, so many influential intentions fall to the wayside.