According to a recent survey, 89% of participants believe that effective communication in business is essential. Eight out of ten people rate their own businesses’ communication as average or poor.
Why is good communication so crucial within businesses? Well, research shows that organisations with employees who are connected through effective communication show increases in productivity of up to 25%. And 28% of employees cite poor communication as the reason for not delivering work on time.
Not only is communication vital to your business, how you communicate is also important. Enter the power of how to master persuasive communication in business.
What is persuasive communication?
As an entrepreneur, your ability to succeed doesn’t only depend on your capabilities, but rather how well you express them. Persuasion is the act or process of presenting arguments to move, motivate, or change your audience. Persuasive communication uses the power of words to influence people or audiences to think and act in a certain way.
This skill means being able to speak with conviction about your beliefs and ideas to articulate your point of view and connect with the listener.
Why is persuasive communication important in business?
Entrepreneurs may have the drive to succeed in business, but often don’t have the right approach. To flourish, you need to work on connecting with the right people and convince them that they need your product or services.
Here are some other reasons why it is important:
- Persuasive communication enables you to market yourself, and your ideas give you leadership qualities, helps you deliver your point, and makes you a role model.
- When you can convince people easily and sell your vision, you could be seen as an extraordinary person. Many entrepreneurs out there, like Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, are a brand unto themselves simply because their words are their greatest selling tool.
- Persuasive communication allows you to use manipulation as a positive way to get customers to buy your products or service or even to motivate your employees.
- This tool makes you relatable. When you speak like you understand people and their needs, you automatically become relatable. This draws people to you.
How can I master persuasive communication?
As we’ve discussed above, mastering the art of persuasive communication can help you win the support of others, unify your team, and encourage those around you to work together towards your business’s ultimate goal. So how do you become a persuasive communicator and create positive change through how you speak? Here are our tips on getting it right.
Know your audience
Step number one is always to craft your message based on who you’re speaking to: your audience. Whether you’re sending an email to an employee or delivering a massive pitch to a potential client, effective persuasive communication happens when you address your audience’s needs, values, and desires.
To persuade your audience, you need to first demonstrate your credibility and authority. People are generally more receptive to someone they view as an authority figure, whether that person has direct authority over them or not.
You should have first-hand knowledge of whatever you’re trying to prove, and you should back up your claims with statistics and concrete examples to establish credibility.
Make your argument meaningful
When other people share an interest or feel ‘on board’ with an idea, they’re more willing to give you the outcome you’re after.
Convey the benefits
The easiest way to persuade an audience is to show them the benefits of what you’re trying to propose. Asking your staff to work overtime, for example, is no easy task. Through persuasive communication though, you’ll be showing them the benefits or perks of working extra hours and how it could impact them and the company positively.
If you’re pitching an idea to a client, explain how your idea will improve their company and help them meet their requirements and goals.
To be a persuasive communicator, you also need to be a top-notch listener. Persuasive communication is not only about what you say but also about possessing nonverbal skills as well. Having excellent listening skills allows you to accurately understand what your audience needs and wants. Even if you disagree, careful listening makes you better informed about how others see the issue at hand.
Have a succinct approach
As you know, the business world is fast-paced and to keep up, you need to communicate clearly and be concise. It’s a lot easier to persuade someone when you get to the point right away and cut the fluff. People, unfortunately, have limited time to hear what you have to say, so it is essential that you relay the most important information in an unambiguous way, as quickly as possible.
Know your outcome
Before you start speaking, know what outcome you hope to elicit from the people you are trying to persuade. Making your objective and purpose clear helps your audience understand what you’re trying to convey and improves your chances of getting the outcome you’re after.
Mastering persuasive communication is not something that happens immediately, and very few people are natural persuasive communicators. This is a skill that takes time and insight to grasp. But by following the pointers above, you’re off to a good start.