Tag Archives: Influence

Free Gift Defense. Disarming the Reciprocity Rule

Influence- The Psychology of Persuasion

Cialdini’s description of salesman using cheap gifts to activate an individual’s belief in The Reciprocity Rule made me realize I have been approaching situations like this incorrectly my whole life. The act of turning down a salesman’s pitch and accepting a free gift may seem like a win but there could be a negative effect to this decision and that is knowing you are in debt to this individual.

However, you can keep the gift and eliminate this indebtedness feeling.

A slight adjustment to your outlook of the situation may reverse a deep cultural behavior tied to reciprocity. Simply remember, “favours are to be met with favours; it does not require that tricks be met with favours.” Using the “trick” of the free gift as an chance to capitalize on an opportunity without guilt was a main takeaway for me from this book.

Is this a true and relevant issue in today’s sales world?

Have you been in a similar situation?

Were you able to disarm?

Feel free to post any other thoughts you may have on this book.

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Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert Cialdini- ReadTree June Book of the Month

ReadTree  June Book of the Month:

Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion, by Robert Cialdini

ReadTree Recommendation: Charles Munger Vice-Chairman Berkshire Hathaway Corporation,investment manager and philanthropist.

Please treat this as your “personal journal” (debate, discuss or simply put thoughts on “paper”). Post comments as you read through or when finished with the book. This will give others an opportunity to experience a different point of view on the subject.

For some additional reading Charles Munger spoke about Influence in his speech: The Psychology of Human Misjudgment

Here is a quick excerpt from that speech: (click here for full transcript to read more)

“But academic psychology has some very important merits alongside its defects. I learned this eventually, in
2the course of general reading, from a book,  Influence, aimed at a popular audience, by a distinguished psychology professor, Robert Cialdini, at Arizona State, a very big university. Cialdini had made himself into a supertenured “Regents’ Professor” at a very young age by devising, describing, and explaining a vast group of clever experiments in which man manipulated man to his detriment, With all of this made possible by man’s intrinsic thinking flaws.

I immediately sent copies  of Cialdini’s book to all my children. I also gave Cialdini a share of Berkshire stock [Class A] to thank him for what he had done for me and the public. Incidentally, the sale by Cialdini of  hundreds of thousands of copies of a book about social psychology was a huge feat,  considering that Cialdini didn’t claim that he was going to improve your sex life or make you any money.”

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