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The Science of Influence: How to Get Anyone to Say "Yes" in 8 Minutes or Less!, Second Edition by Kevin Hogan

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Chapter 4. Credibility

The Pivot Point of Persuasion

Perception of Credibility: Do You Have It? It Means Everything

Barack Obama, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, Oprah Winfrey, Adolf Hitler, Osama bin Laden, Benjamin Franklin . . . all masters of persuasion. They differ(ed) very much in their goals, objectives, and vision but they are/were all successful at influencing the masses. Why? Credibility. Among those they wanted to influence, they are/were believable. They knew their business. They knew their outcomes. They were incredibly competent.

Credibility is one of the common denominators of success at influencing others. Credibility . . . is the "perceiver concerning the believability judgments made by a communicator" (O'Keefe 1990, 181).

Credibility Is the Pivot Point

Credibility matters. Credibility is the pivot point in influence. Unfortunately, it doesn't initially matter whether you have credibility (or are credible); it matters whether you are perceived that way.

The perception of your credibility is critical to your being recognized as a person of influence. Credibility is an emergence of six component factors of which the first is most crucial to success in persuasion.

What factors make up credibility?

  1. Competence.

  2. Trustworthiness.

  3. Expertise.

  4. Likability.

  5. Composure.

  6. Sociability.

Competence is the first major component in the credibility puzzle. Go back to the list of the names at the beginning of this chapter. They are/were all very competent ...

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