Oil and Gas Industrial zone,The equipment of oil refining,Close-up of industrial pipelines of an oil-refinery plant,Detail of oil pipeline with valves in large oil refinery.

The EXPAT

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44. Pre-suasion

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Pre-suasion: Persuasive arguments to make some idea look more positive. “ …being perceived as trustworthy is an effective way to increase one’s influence and that it takes time for that perception to develop.”

Over the years, I’ve attended a lot of programs designed to teach influence skills. Almost to a one, they’ve stressed that being perceived as trustworthy is an effective way to increase one’s influence and that it takes time for that perception to develop. Although the first of these points remains confirmed, a growing body of influence indicates that there is a noteworthy exception to the second.
It turns out to be possible to acquire instant trustworthiness by employing a clever strategy. Rather than succumbing to the tendency to describe all of the most favorable features of an offer or idea up front and reserving mention of any drawbacks until the end of the presentation (or never), a communicator who references a weakness early on is immediately seen as more honest.
The advantage of this sequence is that, with perceived truthfulness already in place, when the major strengths of the case are advanced, the audience is more likely to believe them. After all, they’ve been conveyed by a trustworthy source, one whose honesty had been established (pre-suasively) by a willingness to point not just to positive aspects but also negative ones.
This may apply here as I, an expat, try to gain influence with different management sorts, even foreign. A communicator who references a weakness early on is seen immediately as more honest. With perceived truthfulness already in place, when the major strengths of the case are advanced, the audience is more likely to believe them. After all, they’ve been conveyed by a trustworthy source, one who’s honesty has been established (pre-suasively) by a willingness to point out not just positive aspects but also to negative ones.

Bob Robertson

Bob Robertson

Bob Robertson is a retired professional quality engineer and educator with extensive experience in manufacturing environments throughout the world, including Singapore, Indonesia, Russia, and various locations throughout the United States. Besides all that, he Leslie Householder's admired and revered father, and she is pleased to spotlight his "Expat" stories here on her Rare Faith blog.