ACLR 009: How You Can Get Anyone to Do Anything with Persuasion Expert Brian Ahearn

The science of persuasion and influence is crystal clear. Why do we continue to get it so wrong? Since the vast majority of our communication involves some attempt to influence, persuade, sell, convince, cajole, entice, or arouse, shouldn’t we know how to do it well?

This week we aim curiosity at how to get people to do what we want…ethically.

Who is Brian Ahearn?

Chief Influence Officer at Influence PEOPLE and ethical persuasion expert.

Expert in the application of the science of influence and persuasion. Trainer, keynote speaker, coach, and consultant.

Ex powerlifter and body builder, marathoner, Taekwondo 2nd degree black belt. Ohio Buckeye fan and sipper of scotch.

Named Top 100 Influencers of 2016 by the Science of Digital Marketing. His blog has readers in 200 countries and was named one of the Top 30 Psychology Blogs of 2012 by the Online Psychology Degree Guide. He’s been cited in books including Yes! 50 Scientifically Proven Ways to be PersuasiveThe small BIG, and Introducing Persuasion: A Practical Guide.

What will you learn?

The six major principles of persuasion and how to use them…plus two bonus concepts

During the Korean War, how Chinese interrogators were able to get almost every captured US POW to collaborate with their captors in some way

How to use authority in a way to maximize your influence and to minimize your self aggrandizement

The power and magic of the word, “because”

Curious questions.

How can persuasive principles be used to decrease our divisiveness?

How you can use curiosity to find uncommon commonalities…and how that can be used to increase influence?

What is the role of curiosity in persuasion?

If you could convince one person of one thing, who and what would it be?

Links and resources:

Influence People blog

Influence by Robert Cialdini

Pre-Suasion: A Revolutionary Way to Influence and Persuade by Robert Cialdini

Balvenie Scotch Aged 17 

Puddle of Mudd


Thanks for Listening!

To share your thoughts:

  • Leave a note in the comment section below or Tweet with #ACLR and we’ll find you.
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To help out the show:

Join the Tribe of the Curious.

Special thanks to Brian for joining me this week. Until next time!


  1. Darrell Barker on November 13, 2017 at 11:46 am

    Hello Becki.

    I carved out some time for this podcast because I am a Persuader, (I hate the title “Salesman”) As people come into my office they come upon a sign right on the back of my computer monitor that reads:


    I want them to know right up front that I am there to help them make a wisegood decision, even if after I present my case and they take that information and decide to buy from my competitor I’ll still wave at them at the grocery store.

    This your interview with Brian Ahearn was engaging and informative. I’ve been in the Persuasive Profession my entire adult life and there’s always something new to learn and apply in presentation.

    I am in the Manufactured Housing Industry. Because we built badly in the 70’s through the 90’s, I have to fight this “mobile home” stigma of being the proverbial “red headed stepchild of the housing industry” even though we are now on a par and in some instances even better than “traditional” built housing.

    To change the minds and hearts of those who hold dear their understanding that we are built “inferior” and we “depreciate” is a huge challenge to overcome from the very moment they sit down in my office, hence I was compelled to listen to this unique podcast.

    Thank you for doing it.


    Darrell Barker
    PS. I plan on driving down to Portland soon to visit with Michael Mpagi for some business and catching up, perhaps our paths might cross too.

    • Becki Saltzman on November 18, 2017 at 12:13 pm

      Fantastic, Darrell. I personally love calling myself a salesperson and proudly claim Applied Curiosity training as a sales and influence tool. I view sales as an elegant exchange that benefits all parties. Bad sales is just that. Bad.

      Remind me someday to tell you about my inventor grandfather’s contribution to the Manufactured Housing Industry.

      I appreciate your feedback!

  2. Brian Ahearn on October 9, 2018 at 4:42 pm

    Thanks for listening and commenting Darrell!