This post is part of our Weekly Tips series.
First, a quick recap. In the business of advice-giving, recommendation-making, idea-offering, or selling, it is not enough to be right—you have to earn the right to be right.
Now, the “how.” Most people assume we earn the right to be right by being knowledgeable, prepared, articulate—in short, by being credible.
The key to getting your advice taken actually has surprisingly little to do with the content of the advice you give and everything to do with the context of how you listen to others.
Others will listen to you, and be open to your advice, point of view, and perspective once they feel they have been fully heard and understood by you. Even better if you’re open to influence in the process.
And therein lies another paradox: want to influence others? Stop trying to influence them. Listen first.
Make It Real
This week, get curious.
Bring to mind an upcoming opportunity to be influential with someone (or a group). What point of view are you bringing to the table? State it crisply and simply. Then, put your point of view aside and do the really important work: reflect on what you are curious about. What do you need to find out that will help you thoroughly understand and appreciate their perspectives?
- Find out more about why conventional wisdom about listening and sales is all wrong from our friends at Trusted Advisor Associates, or learn more about the role reciprocity plays in the business of advice-giving in Chapter 3 of The Trusted Advisor Fieldbook: A Comprehensive Toolkit for Leading with Trust.
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