Two weeks ago we debuted part one of our Six Principles of Influence, and How to Use Them, and today’s post will focus on the remaining three principles: Reciprocity, Commitment/Consistency, and Liking/Rapport.
Reciprocity, or the Law of Reciprocity as it is known, states that people want to give back to others who have given to them. Like consensus, this dates back to hunter-gatherer times, where the hunters would go out to get food while the other tribe members stayed and watched over the village and tended to other needs. Reciprocity developed here because the village knew that they would be getting meat and food when the hunters returned, which they needed to survive. On the flip side, the hunter who brought the food needed to know that if they returned frail or hurt there would someone in the village to take care of them and nurse them back to health.
Reciprocity started out mainly as a symbiotic relationship and has stayed ingrained in our consciousness and subconsciousness ever since. Reciprocity can be seen at play with holiday cards, a tradition that many people take part in each year. If the Smith family sends you a card, you will feel indebted to them and want to send them a card back, even if you don’t like the Smith Family! With the law of reciprocity in play, we often find ourselves in situations like this with gifts, favors, and help, because people want to give back to those who have given to them. They are compelled to give back in order to remove the feeling of indebtedness they have from the original action or deed. Continue reading The Six Principles of Influence, and How to Use Them: Part 2