Cialdini’s 6 Universal Truths of Influence


Yesterday I published ‘The minute you use it you lose it’ which was talking about the need to use influence rather to get an employee to do something rather than order them to do it.

Robert Cialdini proposed that there are ‘six universal principles of influence’


People give back to you the kind of treatment that they’ve received from yo


People will feel a desire to comply with a request if they see that it’s consistent with what they’ve publicly committed themselves to in your presence.

A great study was how a restaurant owner was able to reduce the number of no-shows at his restaurant by just having his receptionist change two words that she used when she took a booking. Previously she said, “Thank you for calling Gordon’s Restaurant. If you have to change or cancel your reservation, please call.” That was the standard approach and it was producing about 30 percent no-shows. When she changed to saying instead of “Please call if you have to change or cancel your reservation,” if she said, “Will you please call if you have to change or cancel your reservation?” and waited for people to say yes, as they all did, then no-shows dropped to 10 percent because people were going to be consistent with what they had said publicly they would do.


People will be likely to say yes to your request if you give them evidence that people just like them have been saying yes to it, too.


No surprise that people prefer to say yes to a request to the degree that they know and like the requester.


Authority refers to the tendency of people to be persuaded in your direction when they see you as having knowledge and credibility on the topic.

A crucial point here with regard to authority is not about being in authority and using that lever to move people but someone who is perceived as a credible source of information that people can use to make good choices.


People will try to seize those opportunities that you offer them that are rare or scarce, dwindling in availability.

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