Yes, people do things (good or bad, helpful or unhelpful, productive or counterproductive, charitable or uncharitable) for their own reasons, not ours. And, knowing this, we have two choices; complain that life shouldn’t be that way, or embrace the facts and utilize this principle for the benefit of all concerned.
If your request is not one with which the other person need comply, you must give them a personal benefit for taking action! As we learned from Dale Carnegie in Part One, find their reason, and present your request with that in mind.
Are you planning to ask your boss for a raise? Realize that the fact you are behind on your house payment and really need the money will not be enough of a motivator for her to comply. You’re much better served explaining that, based on past performance, you could help her come in significantly under budget on the next project. That, of course, would make her look great to her superiors when she is seeking her raise (In other words, it’s her reason).
Important point: Everyone’s “reason” is not necessarily money. Feeling good about oneself is often the most powerful motivator of all! Difficult people, in particular, tend to have a poor self-image. So take a genuine, personal interest in them. Show more respect than they might typically receive. Find out their “why.” What will press their emotional hot button and cause them to take the action you want them to take? What’s in it for them?
If you nail that answer, the chances are they — or anyone else — will bend over backwards to make you happy.
That’s win/win persuasion, or Winning Without Intimidation.