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Ep. 487: Robert Cialdini Interview with Michael Covel

Robert Cialdini's 'Pre-Suasion'

Robert Cialdini’s ‘Pre-Suasion’

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Robert Cialdini is on today’s podcast. He is best known for writing “Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion” published back in 1984. Robert is the “go to man” for understanding effective persuasion. Reciprocity, commitment and consistency, social proof, authority, liking and scarcity are his six key principles of influence that he teaches. His new book, “Pre-Suasion: A Revolutionary Way to Influence and Persuade”, introduces a seventh key principle of influence.

Michael asks “How did you start down this path? What was your ‘A-ha’ moment that got you researching for this new book?” Robert says it was a series of recognitions as he was reading the newest work in behavioral studies that made him realize that creating mindsets in people didn’t involve just six principles. He went back to his notes and looked at what the top people in various professions were doing. He realized that they were acting like gardeners. They were preparing the earth before planting the seed. These professionals were priming a persons mind to perceive their idea more fully.

Next, Michael and Robert talk about anchoring a persons perception of what they are paying or asking for. You start off with a higher number or a grander request before hitting the other person with what you really want. “Are there types of thinkers where pre-suasion is not as effective? Or have you found universally across the populations that pre-suasion is just very effective?” Robert says it seems to be a universal operating procedure that is built into us from birth. He uses a study done with 18 month old babies that proves that this is built into our psyche.

Lastly, Michael asks Robert to elaborate on the idea of unity. Robert shares a story of Warren Buffett and unity taken from his book. Michael finishes up the last 20 minutes of the podcast with a presentation on behavior change and the part that social norms play in creating that change, given by Robert. He focuses on how to make people move more towards a environmentally socially responsible role.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Establishing trust before asking for anything
  • Rational self interest
  • Anchoring a persons perception
  • Asking for advice rather than an opinion
  • Warren Buffett’s shareholder letter
  • Environmental responsibility

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