Have you ever wondered how the great ones really do it? How they are able to move a prospect or an audience to action so quickly and effectively, when most of us can barely convince our kids to do their homework?

A person's ability to influence and persuade can be developed with time and
practice. The foundation of persuasion lies in creating a connection in your communication with your prospects as quickly and deeply as possible. The first step is to become aware of the four levels of communication.

 

Level #1: Trivial

Trivial communication is the lowest level of connection; it answers questions such as "How's the weather?" or "Who won the ballgame last night?" This type of communication is more of a courtesy than a pathway to connection.

 

Level #2: Intellectual

The second level of communication caters to our left-brain or logical side, focusing on items such as statistics, data and objective information.

 

Level #3: Emotional

The third level of communication is where the presenter really begins to bond with the prospect or audience in a profound way. The emotional level speaks to our right-brain or emotional side, and tends to create a lasting impression. Emotional level presenters talk about such things as dreams and desires, and how wonderful it will feel when these things are achieved.

All of the good presenters I've ever seen know how to connect with their prospect or audience at this level. They're able to get people thinking and feeling about things in a way that they may have forgotten. Hope is their watchword; motivation is their goal. These warm feelings create a connection and make the prospect more emotionally available and open to suggestion. Many couples get married at this level of communication, but would stand a much better chance of staying married if they connected at the next level.

 

Level #4: Spiritual

The highest level of communication is when human spirit connects to human spirit. When this connection occurs between prospect and presenter, there is very little that can stand in their way. While the emotional connection creates feelings of hope, excitement and possibility, the spiritual connection creates trust and credibility. At its best, spiritual communication creates love. Ask any couple who's been married for over 50 years the secret to their success, and you're bound to find a spiritual connection at the root of their relationship.

The spiritual connection is what's left after the trivial, intellectual, and emotional communication fades away. It's the stuff that the deepest relationships are made of.

How do you create a spiritual connection with your prospects? Help them reveal themselves to themselves. In other words, help them discover the beauty and wonder of what's inside them.

My late business partner, Bill Gove, had a great saying about how you know when you've created this level of connection with another human being: "I feel best about me, when I'm with you." Bill felt that this was the key phrase representing the spiritual connection between two people.

The great presenters ask their audiences to look inside themselves and become aware of their own answers to the big questions of life and living. The presenter facilitates this self-discovery process by sharing his or her own personal triumphs and tragedies along life's journey. This process builds trust and confidence between the presenter and prospect and moves the relationship forward very quickly.

Total honesty and sincerity is a must. Any attempt at exaggeration or ego gratification will be seen as manipulation and will shut down the communication/connection process. Once a spiritual pathway between people is created, sensitivity to the truth is heightened beyond normal awareness.

Soul-to-soul communication is not a technique, it's a phenomenon. Truth, honesty, and trust are the lifeblood of the spiritual connection; to create and maintain this highest level of access and connection, your prospect must feel all three at all times during the presentation. Once you have created that connection and context, your ability to influence and persuade a person or an audience is substantially elevated.

 

Seven Questions for Connection

Here are seven questions to ask your prospect during your presentation to help you move toward creating a spiritual connection:

 

1. What really matters to you in life?

2. What are you willing to fight for?

3. What are you willing to die for?

4. How will you know when you achieved your ultimate goal?

 

These questions will often generate common answers, such as family, country, the people I love, and happiness. This is the beginning of the process. The next three questions will help you move closer to a spiritual level of communication.

 

5. Why do you feel that way?

6. Why is that important to you?

7. What does that mean to you?

 

Keep asking questions
and digging for the deepest responses you can get. You'll know you're close to a spiritual connection when the person starts talking in terms of feelings.

Be willing to share your innermost thoughts with your prospect, and you will begin the process of gaining her trust. And the next time you see a great persuader present--you'll know the real secret of her success!

 

STEVE SIEBOLD

is co-founder of the Gove-Siebold Group (www.gove-siebold.com),
a training organization that helps
networkers develop world-class
communication skills.