Six recommendations for a persuasive argument

Kerstin Boll
Communication and interaction skills

Persuading others. Negotiating details. Shaping. Implementing plans. Fulfilling wishes and ideas. Making things move.

Whatever you want to achieve: You can rarely reach your goal alone. It is almost always necessary to win others over to your position. In most cases, the way to your goal is through successful communication. And that means in practice: arguing and persuading.

In our day-to-day we are constantly nehotiating something, whether in our private lives or at work. Do we go on vacation to the mountains or to the sea? Do we want to work in a home office, physically in the office or in a hybrid work environment?

Arguing persuasively is therefore a skill that will support you in all areas of life.

Argumentation and persuasion: This is how it works

Bringing your own ideas to your team is something positive all around. Your initiative shows interest and commitment.

Pay attention to the how so that your plan succeeds. It's best to prepare yourself so that your colleagues, friends or family members are willing to lend you a sympathetic ear. Only then will your idea have a chance.

The following recommendations will put you on a promising path to success:

Change your point of view

No matter how much your cause burns inside you, successful argumentation and persuasion means thinking of others first. Make clear to them the advantage they will gain if they support your position. To do this, put yourself in the position of the person you are talking to and look at your issue from their point of view.

Clarify your goal

Uncertainty and imprecision reflect on you and weaken your position. Therefore, clarify for yourself what you want to achieve and how you want to formulate your arguments. It is best to build them up from your goal, while keeping the interests of your counterparts in mind.

Be prepared

Expect questions and objections from those around you. They do not always mean rejection. Rather, they are a sign that the people you are talking to are considering your concerns. They are trying to imagine what the future will be like if they join you.

Doing something differently than before can be uncomfortable or sometimes even scary. Not to mention, consistently enthusiastic reactions are rare. This makes it all the more important to prepare for the interview so that you can respond confidently to objections and questions.

Be brief

It is best to get to the point quickly with your arguments, because the attention span is short. Extensive explanations come across as unsympathetic and also provide a target for counter-arguments.

The main argument first

Organize your arguments according to their importance and put the most important at the beginning. At the beginning of your argument, the attention of your counterpart is the greatest..

Seize the right moment

Stress and hectic are bad preconditions if you want to make progress with your goal. Your conversation partners have other things on their minds. Also make sure that the mood towards you and your topic is positive or at least neutral. Therefore, wait for a favorable moment in both respects.

Argue confidently and persuasively

Arguing and persuading has a certain similarity to a presentation: you address others in order to convince them of something. Here, as there, there is a wealth of experience and best practices from which you can benefit, such as:

  • Leading the conversation with strategies, such as the reacting or the acting situational entry.

  • Preparing systematically with the ETHOS framework.

  • Containing opposing positions from the outset with the compromise formula.

  • Debunking fake arguments.

  • Countering unfair conversational tactics with the 4⁠-⁠I Method.

There's no reason to plunge ahead with heart palpitations or without preparing. On the contrary: The more secure you are in the saddle, the more convincing you will be with your arguments.

The five sentence technique: White paper to Download (coming soon)

You want to take action and try this out? A simple and flexible blueprint for your argument is the five-sentence technique. In our white paper, we introduce you to the basic principles.

E⁠-⁠Training: „Argumentation and Persuasion“ from Pinktum

Companies are increasingly dependent on the expertise and creativity of their employees. Everyone should therefore be able to represent their own ideas and opinions in a well-founded and fair manner.

In our e⁠-⁠training: Argumentation and persuasion with the five-sentence technique, we introduce participants to basic techniques of argumentation. From the contents:

  • Shaping arguments using the five-sentence technique.

  • Identifying the right moment.

  • Researching and preparing topics for discussion.

  • Matching arguments to counterpart.

  • Giving weight to arguments.

  • Debunking counterarguments.

  • Deflecting verbal attacks.

Find out more at: Justification and Persuasion Techniques.

We will be happy to set up a test account for HR staff. Click here for the form: free trial.

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