Power is the ability to get things done – your way. Sometimes
it’s a direct order that you give, sometimes a suggestion you
make, or a request or the asking of a favor; but the result (if
you have power) is always that the other person acts and you
derive a benefit from the other person’s actions.
Once can have power in many different ways. You have it over
your employees because you pay their salaries. If you are an
expert in a special field, it’s because you know the best way to
handle matters. In a legal dispute it’s because you have the
law on your side. If you have credit cards, it can be part of
your lifestyle to go into a store, hotel, or restaurant, in any
city, and order whatever you wish. In politics it’s because
folks will give you their votes, hoping that you’ll work and
succeed in getting the government to serve them in their area.
And there’s the power that derives from being talented, charming
and capable; of being up-to-the minute and knowledgeable, so
people know if they let you handle things for them or listen to
your advice, they’ll come out ahead.
One more aspect of power. This concerns competition. If all
the world were fair and equal, one would have no need for the
upper hand, for the advantage, for power. But of course the
world isn’t. Which often means that in a competitive situation
you cannot merely settle for an equal chance. You must keep
your eyes and ears, and indeed all you faculties, open for any
clue or other tips that will move the balance in your favor.
Whenever possible, make sure you get more than an equal chance.
You Have to Look the Part
People are impressed by how a man looks. They are often not
aware of exactly why they treat one man like a VIP and another
gets the bum’s rush. Their reactions may be subliminal, below
their conscious awareness. But take it from me, if you’re well
dressed, neatly groomed, hair trimmed, etc., and are driving a
snazzy car, you’ll be well received; while a guy who’s wearing
sloppy clothes, unshaven and unclean, and who’s driving an old
heap, will hardly get any attention at all. Look as good as you
can; and back it up in other ways.
Add the other elements of the power image too. Clothing – it’s
worth investing some money to be well dressed. Buy suits on time
payments if you can (a credit card is very useful for this).
That way the clothes are helping to get power, and therefore
money, for you while you are paying for them. Don’t forget
about the car you drive around in; if the one you have is not
impressive then rent one that is. Rental cars don’t cost that
much and driving a good one pays dividends in the power sphere.
Try to join clubs and organization (business, social, political)
that have important and influential members. If at first you
can’t become a member, then manoeuvre a member into taking you
as his guest.
Money and power beget money and power, the more they thing you
have, the more you’ll get.
We must repeat that, for most people, those who belong to the
power elite are those that appear to belong to it. Unless
recognized personally, a millionaire will be turned away from a
class restaurant if he’s not well-dressed.
You Have to Consciously Act the Part of One Who is Used to Being
There’s another extremely important factor in appearing to
already have money and power beyond what I mentioned above and
that is your own manner of doing things. You must move, speak
and act power. Have you ever met the grandson of a man who
amassed a fortune and wondered how a grandfather who did so much
could have a grandson who seems like such a weakling? It’s
true; that grandson could never get rich on his own; if he
hadn’t inherited his family’s money, he’d be poor because he’s
weak and incompetent. And it shows. The men who, like
yourself, are capable of making money now, are men who can act
in a strong style that almost seems to draw money like a magnet.
Language, and the way you speak , can say as much as the ideas
in your words. Equally important however, is your body
language, that is, the way you stand, walk, move and sit, and
the gestures you make.
Be the Man Who’s in Demand
Power isn’t just you being able to call someone and tell him
what to do; it’s also other men calling you and asking for your
business or wanting to associate with you. If you’re a man who
seems to possess a wide knowledge of the world, an awareness of
trend, if you’re the early-bird who catches sight of
opportunities first, if you’re the man who’s capable of handling
many different kinds of situations, then people will seek you
out. They’ll invite you to vacation at their country homes, to
meet their influential associates, to join their social clubs
and their business syndicates. And when they do, all of these
will enhance your image of power, and widen your power base so
you can zoom in even more.
When the Fight for Power Gets Harder
Everything we’ve said so far will be useful in just about every
situation; but when the struggle for power gets more intense,
some other methods are needed. When the person(s) you’re
talking to has been open-minded and your powers of persuasion
have been working from the moment you first started talking, the
usual techniques can be used. But what if you’re dealing with
someone whose mind is closed to your ideas and influence from
the start, or who feels he is in direct competition with you?
Then things must be handled somewhat differently.
Most important, be in control of the situation at all times. If
you feel your control is slipping, do something to regain it,
You could do something vividly dramatic and totally bewildering
to the other person, like suddenly shouting or pounding on your
desk. Or you could press a secret buzzer to have someone rush
in and interrupt when the other side is coming on too strong.
Never ever get into a power struggle when you’re at any kind of
a disadvantage; if you’re tired or if the discussion turns to a
subject in which the other guy is an expert. Always focus your
own mental energy and project your thoughts into his mind. Look
him in the eyes, try to gain his confidence. Always have a
picture in your mind of a victory over this person bigger than
the victory you need to achieve your aims. And whatever you do,
don’t lose; that is, if you realize that you can’t beat him,
then leave. It’s better not to have victory than to have a
Say Whatever Does the Trick
Making a lot of money is largely a process of convincing people,
of selling yourself, your service, your product. And the trick
is to tell them what they want to hear. The problem is to find
out what they want to hear. So you’ll start out by giving them
basic information about what you’re selling. You then continue
with your sales approach, always watching their reactions
carefully. When you see their eyes light up and they then lean
forward with interest, then continue on the topic that aroused
that interest, no matter how odd it may seem to you. And do the
opposite when you reach any of the usual parts of your
presentation, if the prospect shows less than the normal amount
of interest; that is, shorten that part and go on tho the next.
From Start to Finish
You start out by telling them what the product or service is or
does. The kinds of benefits people get from using it and some
examples of ways, both usual and unusual, that other folks have
used it. It often helps to mention that « Mr. Anderson, you
know, the big shot, just bought two of them for his own use », or
that « the XYZ Corporation recently bought seven of them for
their executives ». Or if you’re selling a more heavy duty item,
that « Smith’s Construction Company has been using them for
years ». If it’s almost a custom made item, tell them they’re
one of the select few who will even get a chance to buy it. If
you have an opportunity to talk to his wife or a friend of his,
play along with that other person and have them unknowingly
hinting to the customer that « it certainly sounds like a good
deal ». If his kids are with him, get them to needle him into
buying it. Use any method that works.
Suppose the guy seems convinced but he can’t seem to make up his
mind to actually hand over the money or sign the contract to
make the purchase. Sometimes it helps to imply that he really
can’t afford it. He might buy it just to show you he isn’t poor
or a cheapskate. Another great strategy that sometimes works in
desperation to close a sale is to make him feel guilty if he
doesn’t buy. Imply that he deliberately wasted your time and
energy, the he’s rotten and thoughtless, that he just wanted to
make a phony impression on his wife or girl friend or anyone who
is there with him. You might want to say all this very loudly,
almost yelling, so that a crowd gathers and you shame him into
buying. Or you can try another method to clinch the sale, offer
him a « special bonus ». Say you’ll give him a longer time to
pay, or a contract for « free » servicing or that you’ll add on a
bonus of another item « free ». Actually he may have been
entitled to this « extra » all along, but if you haven’t mentioned
it, then now’s the time. Try to keep one or two tings in
reserve as your last pieces of ammunition.
To Sum It Up
Prepare in advance so you know the other man’s point of view;
if you’re able to benefit him, he’ll practically jump at the
chance to let you make money off him. Tell him what he wants to
hear. And above all, keep eyes and ears open for any
information, clues or tip-offs, favorable or unfavorable, that
will give you the powers to persuade him.
In the power battle called life, victory will go to those who
find the right weapons and use them. So keep your weapons
handy; get a head start and don’t lose it. Be alert for clues
you can use to your advantage. Present yourself with
confidence; broadcast your will power, speak and move with
assurance, and, to make sure they get the message, have the
clothes, car, office and the other outer appearances of power
and money. People tend to believe what they see, and if you
look like you’ve got it made, then you will have it made.