Concrete Experience and Reflective Observation
Leaders in business organizations are occupied with several tasks and duties. One of the experiences I obtain as a leader in data analysis is based on persuasive messages. A persuasive message is one of the central sources of information that may call to action, convince, and support (Lehman & DuFrene, 2018). I have to be ready to work hard to gather and critically analyze information and make sure all the necessary elements of persuasion are included. In my business world, effective persuasion works when an attention statement is built to surprise or ask a question. Then, an introductory section must be formulated because my listeners have to understand what I am talking about and what my purposes are. The next step is to give all the necessary explanations and support my discussion with statistics or other credible and easy-to-understand information. Finally, my persuasion should end with an expected outcome or a solution.
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One of the remarkable cases in my practice was connected to the necessity to prove an urgency of a new training program for my team. It was probably one of my serious mistakes because I tried to persuade just because I believed it was important for the company. I introduced a program and underlined the outcomes that I wanted to expect from employees. However, I failed to analyze all the information and attract the attention of my people. They were not interested in training but felt obliged to follow an order. After working as a Crew Leader for several years, I learned that my task is not only to give orders but make sure that my team is properly persuaded and interested. Therefore, another change in the team was developed in a new way. Firstly, I critically identified the motives and boundaries of the change to attract attention and inform every participant. Then, I found several statistical examples to prove the effectiveness of change. Finally, I persuaded the team to take any action because it was their chance to become better and to earn more benefits.
The results were impressive because almost all the employees were intrigued by this opportunity. They shared their opinions and introduced their possible contributions to the improvements in performance management. Department support, training intentions, and problem-solving activities were properly promoted. It was my personal success at the professional level. I believed that such outcomes depended on my ability to analyze information from different sources, learn from the examples of other people, and integrate the obtained facts and recommendations into my practice.
Theories and Principles/Abstract Conceptualization
One of the goals of this course is to learn how to formulate persuasive arguments and analyze different information critically and clearly. In this case, my leadership and persuasive communication depend on how well I analyze data for my effective persuasion. Employee motivation and simplicity of business issues are determined by the results of systematic and heuristic analyses (Stiff, 2017). Persuasion in communication is not always easy to achieve, but its benefits are critical for further organizational development, professional growth, and high-quality performance.
The information manipulation theory is in the list of population psychological theories, the goal of which is to persuade and promote deceptive discourse. According to Lee (2014), this theory works when one of the maxims is breaking: the fullness of information (quantity), the truthfulness of information (quality), relevance of facts (relation), and supportiveness (manner). McCornack is the author of this theory who believes that people are able to manipulate these areas of information to persuade others, define their strengths and weaknesses, and use them for personal benefits.
The theory of reasoned action was formulated by Ajzen and Fishbein at the end of the 1900s. It is used to explain the connection between human attitudes and behaviors to build a perfect human action (Bartle & Harvey, 2017). As soon as a person is able to identify and understand personal needs and opportunities, a behavior can be developed and applied to a particular situation.
The two-step information flow theory was developed in the middle of the 20th century to prove the quality of data found in different sources. Its authors developed an idea that information had to pass on to a leader’s opinion and then be reached to other employees who could be interested in it (Pang & Ng, 2017). Therefore, leaders’ opinions should not be biased or judged to be credible and effective for persuasion.
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In general, the analysis of information plays an important role in different practices, including persuasive communication. Each theory is a unique way to understand how to search for different sources and elaborate information. As a rule, it is recommended not to use many theories but to pick several credible options and follow them. However, in some cases, combining different techniques is the only chance to achieve good results.
Testing and Application/Active Experimentation
The first theory is a good tool for many leaders to learn how to use the information for their own benefit. In my case, I like the idea of manipulating information in terms of its quality and relation to the area of my work. Sometimes, people just need a strong hint about the importance of change or additional training, and information manipulation is a way to influence their decisions and participation.
The second theory is based on reasoned action that, in its turn, is based on personal needs and demands. In our company, identifying employees’ needs plays an important role because training, safety, and new objectives have to be offered properly. I want to believe that my personal behavior as a leader does not contradict employees’ attitudes but helps them cooperate and strive for better outcomes.
The last theory of two-step information flow is my opportunity to identify the line between what data I, as a leader, should possess and share with my team. Sometimes, additional financial statements or negative opinions may frustrate a team and decrease their desire to work. My persuasion should work on positive attitudes and information to motivate, encourage, and promote progress. In other words, I have to be a filter of information in the company to make sure everything goes as I plan.
Bartle, N. C., & Harvey, K. (2017). Explaining infant feeding: The role of previous personal and vicarious experience on attitudes, subjective norms, self‐efficacy, and breastfeeding outcomes. British Journal of Health Psychology, 22(4), 763-785.
Lee, K. (2014). How to use 10 psychological theories to persuade people. Web.
Lehman, C. M., & DuFrene, D. D. (2018). BCOM (9th ed.). Boston, MA: Cengage Learning.
Pang, N., & Ng, J. (2017). Misinformation in a riot: A two-step flow view. Online Information Review, 41(4), 438-453.
Stiff, J. B. (2017, May). The science of persuasion: Using the concepts of heuristic and systematic information processing to enhance courtroom persuasion. Focal Point Press. Web.