Difference Between Persuasion and Manipulation

Difference Between Persuasion and manipulation Robert Cialdini

Difference Between Persuasion and manipulation

1 of my students had seen my video on Influence The Psychology of Persuasion By Robert Cialdini. So recently he asked me the difference between Persuasion and Manipulation. Part of me was surprised that this Leader did not know. Then again even though persuasion and manipulation are vastly different they are also dangerously close.

The quick answer to the difference between Persuasion and Manipulation is INTENT. What is the leader or speaker trying to achieve and more importantly what is their core motivation and for who’s benefit.

  1. Persuaders – Know your strengths and and Encourage you to rally
  2. Manipulators – Know your Vulnerabilities and Exploit them mercilessly

Another key component in the differences is how the 2 use emotions for or against you. Manipulators use, Fear, Anxiety, Guilt whereas the Persuaders typically use Encouragement, Empowerment and Happiness towards the outcome. Now there will be times when even persuasion will have to be used to get people to do uncomfortable things but again if it ultimately benefits THEM then this is a good thing.

If you are hoping to be a Network Marketing Leader or a leader of any  kind actually, you will have to learn to be persuasive whether you like it or not. As a matter of fact people are counting on you to be persuasive because most are inherently lazy and procrastinators that need a constant push. They also require that you paint a vision for them and give them the confidence and encouragement to believe they can realize that vision.

Your steadfastness, unwavering belief and positive vision of their outcome will become infectious and give them to boost to do something they might not have done on their own. This is simply because they didn’t think it was possible or necessary. You have now used your Influence to persuade them. When done right however the decision MUST ultimately be theirs. You just provide the Why and the How. They still have to provide the WILL to move forward.

By contrast a Manipulator will guilt and shame them to force their hand and their decision. Even if this works there will be two major short comings:

  1. The person or team will resent you eventually
  2. This typically will only work in the short term

Unlike helpful persuasive leaders, Manipulators primary focus is their own benefit. Unfortunately it typically comes at the expense of those being manipulated. If you find your audience or prospects are becoming agitated or expressing gross discomfort with your ideas, suggestions or requests then they probably feel as if you are manipulating them in some way. Even if you are NOT the perception is still important to get trust and buy in. By contrast when you are using influence to persuade them even if you are requesting that they dig down deep you can see their eyes light up with a growing belief in the possibilities.

For more information on Persuasion check out some of my other articles on this subject. Also Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert Cialdini is a must read for any up and coming network marketing leader or any business leader for that matter.


About the Author Kevin

Kevin Latmore is as a record breaking $7Figure Network Marketing Success Story. Some Call him a marketing guru. He's coached over 100K people in 65 countries and sold over $100M worth of goods / services. Kevin is now a highly sought after MLM Consultant, Public Speaker and Elite Business Coach.

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