Friday, July 18, 2008

From The Religious Language Newsletter, etc.

Cleaning Up Bad Communication Habits," by Kibbie Simmons Ruth and Karen A. McClintock, online at

It begins with:

"Of the several negative communication patterns congregations practice, three
habits are particularly problematic: triangulation, pass-through communication,
and anonymous feedback. While these three may be strategies for getting needs
met, they all block rather than help healthy communication. Even if well
intentioned, they are deadly habits that in the long run allow people to
dodge accountability, gain power, and alienate others."

Persuasion principles

Much of persuasion and other forms of changing minds is based on a relatively small number of principles. If you can understand the principles, then you can invent your own techniques. It thus makes sense to spend time to understand these principles (persuaded yet?).

Alignment: When everything lines up, there are no contradictions to cause disagreement.

Amplification: Make the important bits bigger and other bits smaller.

Appeal: If asked nicely, we will follow the rules we have made for ourselves.

Arousal: When I am aroused I am full engaged and hence more likely to pay attention.

Association: Our thoughts are connected. Think one thing and the next is automatic.

Assumption: Acting as if something is true often makes it true.

Attention: Make sure they are listening before you try to sell them something.

Authority: Use your authority and others will obey.

Bonding: I will usually do what my friends ask of me, without negotiation.

Closure: Close the door of thinking and the deal is done.

Completion: We need to complete that which is started.

Confidence: If I am confident, then you can be confident.

Confusion: A drowning person will clutch at a straw. So will a confused one.

Consistency: We like to maintain consistency between what we think, say and do.

Contrast: We notice and decide by difference between two things, not absolute measures.

Daring: If you dare me to do something, I daren't not do it.

Deception: Convincing by trickery.

Dependence: If you are dependent on me, I can use this as a lever to persuade you.

Distraction: If I distract your attention, I can then slip around your guard.

Evidence: I cannot deny what I see with my own eyes.

Exchange: if I do something for you, then you are obliged to do something for me.

Experience: I cannot deny what I experience for myself.

Fragmentation: Break up the problem into agreeable parts.

Framing: Meaning depends on context. So control the context.

Harmony: Go with the flow to build trust and create subtle shifts.

Hurt and Rescue: Make them uncomfortable then throw them a rope.

Interest: If I am interested then I will pay attention.

Investment: If I have invested in something, I do not want to waste that investment.

Involvement: Action leads to commitment.

Logic: What makes sense must be true.

Objectivity: Standing back decreases emotion and increases logic.

Obligation: Creating a duty that must be discharged.

Passion: Enthusiasm is catching.

Perception: Perception is reality. So manage it.

Pull: Create attraction that pulls people in.

Push: I give you no option but to obey.

Repetition: If something happens often enough, I will eventually be persuaded.

Understanding:If I understand you, then I can interact more accurately with you.

The site these are extracted from has a lot more. Think about when you were persuaded last, were you manipulated?

GLIBIDITY, Slang. a condition
in which a person gives very glib answers.