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How to Gain Co-Operation

How to Gain Co-operation

How to Gain Co-operation

Would you like help to gain the co-operation of others?

It would be advantageous for you if you could gain their co-operation, since in order to achieve any goal, you are going to need the co-operation of others, and since you cannot use force, you are going to need to gain their willing co-operation.

How could you do that?

Here are the ways.

1. The best way to gain the co-operation of others is to first help them

Human beings are by nature, traders. We trade with each other.

This fact is reflected in our language. You have probably heard the following three phrases:

  • If you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours.
  • One good turn, deserves another.
  • An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.

So, if I want to gain your co-operation, then the best way I can do that, is to have co-operated with you first.

This translates into a general policy of you doing things for others, before you ask them to do something for you.

To illustrate; if you are unco-operative to Bob on day one, then you won't get much co-operation from Bob on day two. But, if you make it a habit to be co-operative and helpful to Bob on day one, then you are much more likely to gain Bobs co-operation on day two.

It's simple economics.

2. Frame your request for an action in polite language

Try not to tell people what you want them to do. Please don't give orders. Instead, make the following phrase one of your best speech habits.

"Would you please......."

Use the phrase "would you please..?" instead of, "I want you to..." and, "I need you to ...?"

"Would you please help me to carry the shopping in?"
"Would you please, send me those documents by the end of this morning?"

Please listen to these three statements and feel the emotional difference in how they sound.

  1. "I want you to go to Swindon and pick up the equipment."
  2. "I need you to go to Swindon and pick up the equipment.
  3. "Would you please, go to Swindon and pick up the equipment."

Can you feel the difference?

Would you agree that the third example is the best?

3. Give the reason for the request

You need to think of all people as being rational beings. Think of everyone as needing to see a reason for everything. Assume that if people can see NO good reason for doing something, then they will not be motivated to do it.

Even better, if you can make that reason a personal reason, meaning, if the person doing the task can see that there is a good reason, and the reason is linked to his-her own self-interest (benefit), then you will have no trouble gaining their full co-operation.

If you want to gain their full co-operation:

  1. Make the reason for your request clear.
  2. And if you can try to make the reason for the request be linked to the self-interest of the person doing the task, then that would be the best form of the request.

If you don't give the reason for the request, then there won't be much motivation to co-operate.

If you make your reason a selfish reason, (meaning the request is for your own interest and there is nothing in it for the task-doer) then there won't be much motivation to co-operate.

Tie your request to a reason and, if possible, also to a personal benefit for the performer.

4. Always show appreciation and always give thanks

If a person does something, ALWAYS show some form of appreciation and thanks.

The lack of appreciation is the main failing in many relationships.

How many times have you heard people complaining that they don't feel appreciated?

  • "My partner does not appreciate me!"
  • "My boss does not appreciate me!"
  • "I never hear one word of thanks!"

This is a common complaint. A lack of appreciation is the fastest way to lose the willing co-operation of others.

Would you please, make this next sentence another one of your speech habits?

"Thank you for 'blank'. I really appreciate it!"

You use this phrase every day, in the following way.

  • "Thank you for carrying the shopping in; I really appreciate it!"
  • "Thank you for going to Swindon and picking up the equipment, I really appreciate it!"
  • "Thank you for reading my blog, I really appreciate it!"

If you want to gain the co-operative assistance of others, it is vital that you get into the habit of giving verbal praise and appreciation.

Remember this, "The lack of appreciation is a major de-motivator".

Kind words and appreciation are major motivators.

Kind words, work wonders.

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About the Author: Chris Farmer


Chris Farmer is the founder of the Corporate Coach Group and has many years’ experience in training leaders and managers, in both the public and private sectors, to achieve their organisational goals, especially during tough economic times. He is also well aware of the disciplines and problems associated with running a business.

Over the years, Chris has designed and delivered thousands of training programmes and has coached and motivated many management teams, groups and individuals. His training programmes are both structured and clear, designed to help delegates organise their thinking and, wherever necessary, to improve their techniques and skills.

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Further Reading in Communication - Persuasive Communication

  • The Power of Evaluative Questions
    Our emotional responses are largely dictated by our evaluation of situations. By asking the right type of questions you can cultivate a confident and problem-solving mind set.
    Read Article >
  • How to Persuade Others to Do What I Want
    In leadership the common desire to make others do what you want is misguided. Forceful tactics lead to poor outcomes. Reframing the question to seek willing cooperation is crucial, as well as highlighting long-term benefits.
    Read Article >
  • Building Rapport
    Building Rapport Communication skills training Have you ever met someone who seems to be able to "connect" with everyone? Have you noticed how people like this are more effective in their role? Life seems to be easier for them, doesn't it? This ability to connect with others is called Rapport. Creating...
    Read Article >
  • Ten Ways to Persuade Someone
    To be effective, we often need other people's co-operation. Sometimes you need to persuade someone that your idea is worth their time and effort. Here are ten persuasive tacts for you to try when persuasion is needed.
    Read Article >
  • Three Steps to Better Communication Skills
    It is important to become a good communicator, since to achieve your goals, you need to gain the willing cooperation of others around you.
    Read Article >

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