Harnessing The Power of Persuasion.

When last did you get someone to easily do something or cause an event to happen for you simply by influence?

Do you think you have what it takes to make a person willingly agree to your idea without you being overbearing?

When we think about persuasion, we might first think about the advertising messages that urge viewers to buy a particular product, or the annoying traders in the market pulling you by the hand to patronize them, or maybe the political candidates with incentives that coerce people to throw in votes for them. While this may be part of it, persuasion is not forcing.

Persuasion is a symbolic process in which communicators try to convince other people to change their attitudes or behaviours regarding an issue through the transmission of a message in an atmosphere of free choice.

According to Brian Tracy, persuasion is influence and influencing others can make you one of the most important people in your society. And, all successful people with personal power are persuasion experts.

An employee with strong persuasion skills can influence others to perform well and succeed. A persuasive employee is also able to expedite and facilitate group decision-making. When used well, persuasion is a valuable soft skill that can have a significant impact in any workplace and life generally.

In 1955, Ella Fitzgerald had been singing professionally for almost 20 years. She was a critically acclaimed Jazz singer, yet barely known by the public because she was black at a time when racial segregation in the US was still rampant.

It was difficult for Ella to get bookings in venues that appealed to mostly-white audiences. Despite the odds against her, she set her sights on performing at Mocambo, the most famous Los Angeles jazz club.
Time and again, the club manager turned Ella down. He didn’t want to risk blowback from booking a black singer. Not only might he lose ticket sales for the night, but having a black singer could also, in his eyes, damage the club’s brand.

Still, Ella was persistent. She believed singing at Mocambo could help her enter the mainstream. So one night, in frustration, she confided to her good friend Marilyn Monroe. Marilyn was an internationally recognized white film star.

Marilyn was aghast. She picked up the phone and called the manager of Mocambo. She asked him to book Ella on the spot. The manager refused. So Marilyn sweetened the deal: if he made Ella the headliner of Mocambo for a week, she’d sit in the front row every night Ella was there.
The manager considered the offer. He’d get enormous attention by announcing Marilyn was in the house each night. “The press will go wild,” Marilyn reaffirmed to him. He was convinced and agreed to make Ella the headliner at Mocambo.

As promised, Marilyn sat in the front row every night Ella played. Despite still-rampant racism, the club was at maximum capacity each night. And the crowd that initially came to see Marilyn quickly fell in love with Ella’s sultry jazz voice.


That week launched Ella Fitzgerald as a bona fide singing star. She never again played at a small venue and it was thanks to her persistence, her amazing talent, and some persuasive help from a friend named Marilyn Monroe.

You and I may not have the persuasive power of Marilyn Monroe or the vocal prowess of Ella Fitzgerald, but we can still learn a lot from what they were able to do at Mocambo more than sixty years ago.

When we want to create shifts on our team and in the world, we can notice where our power lies and anticipate objections to our proposals with ready-made solutions that are hard to turn down.

The power of persuasion is of extraordinary and critical importance in today’s world. Nearly every human encounter includes an attempt to gain influence or to persuade others to our way of thinking. Regardless of age, profession, religion, or philosophical beliefs, people are always trying to persuade each other. We all want to be able to persuade and influence so others will listen to, trust, and follow us.

The ability to persuade is power, for good or for bad. Think of all the people in your life who have persuaded you to reach higher and achieve greatness. Persuasive people keep kids off drugs, prevent wars, and improve lives. Of course, persuasive people also get kids on drugs, stir up wars, and destroy lives. We want to focus on the power of persuasion for the improvement and betterment of ourselves, our friends and families, and our communities.

If you are being sincere with yourself, the reason you haven’t achieved some goals, signed some deals and whatnot is because you have not successfully harnessed the power to persuade and influence anyone. Nobody listens to you. Nobody accepts the ideas you propose. You, unfortunately, don’t have as much influence on people as you ought to. Needless to say, the power of persuasion makes the world go round.

To persuade or influence, you must be confident. Your first step is to remain and project confidence throughout the entirety of your appeal. The more confident you are, the more convincing your arguments are going to sound, and the more powerful you’re going to appear.

Secondly, Make it seem like a win-win situation. This is where you buttress the benefit the other party will get at the end of the day. One of the more effective means of persuasion is making your request seem valuable and beneficial to the other party like in the case of Marilyn Monroe who sweetened a deal by offering to sit in the front row if the manager made Ella the headliner of Mocambo. If you are to sell a glass of water to me, what benefit will I get from drinking your water? If you want to persuade someone to quit smoking, what is the benefit they get when they quit smoking?

Lastly, be patient but persistent. You can’t always persuade your subject to give you what you want on the first try. If you’re unsuccessful, don’t resort to pleading, begging, arguing or forcing them or getting our character. Instead, let the situation go, recollect yourself, and restrategize on other tactics to get them in your corner.

As Aristotle said, “Character may almost be called the most effective means of persuasion.”

In The Spirit of Valentine

By now, you must have seen some valentine couple deals on social media or come across the TikTok challenge of couples in prep for valentine or maybe someone must have asked if you’ve got any plans for valentine or that one seamlessly annoying friend must have sung to your hearing, “valentine is coming ..where is your boyfriend”

If you are like me, then you have a long chain of friends in relationships who keep bombarding their WhatsApp status with loved-up valentine photos and plans with their partner. Oh well

The premise of Valentine’s Day is really exciting regardless of what it means to you. We have come to understand that it is a season to be loved, show love and be appreciated.
From research, Catholics believe that Feb. 14 celebrates the martyrdom of Saint Valentine, who was a Roman priest who was beheaded in the third century for reasons no one has agreed on until date.

Another school of thought says Valentine was a bishop in Terni, Italy, who healed the sick, including the blind daughter of a prison guard whom he met while in jail for practising Christianity in a pagan world.

Some say he was sentenced to death because he tried to convert Emperor Claudius to Christianity. Others say the sentence came because he was caught secretly performing weddings, defying a ban on marriage that had been imposed by the Emperor as a solution to a military recruitment crunch.

The Feast of Saint Valentine, however, was established by Pope Gelasius I in AD 496 to be celebrated on February 14 in honour of Saint Valentine of Rome, who died on that date in AD 269. It only became associated with romantic love in the 14th and 15th centuries when notions of courtly love flourished, apparently by association with the “lovebirds” of early spring. In 18th-century England, it grew into an occasion in which couples expressed their love for each other by presenting flowers, offering confectionery, and sending greeting cards.

Ultimately, it is established that valentine is intertwined with love, sacrifice and compassion. Although we may have come to understand the premise of valentine, we must also broaden our perspective on the people that deserve love this season.

We must understand that love and compassion can be shared with strangers, not just loved ones. It could be your ill neighbour, or the poor man on the street, or your employees, or the feeble old woman by the roadside selling peanuts.
It could be as simple as giving compliments, showing appreciation, patronage, giving words of encouragement or just giving listening ear.

It could be by helping an older person cross the street, giving a stranger directions, giving up your seat on the bus to someone else or just by simply smiling at the salesperson from the grocery store, helping your spouse with the dishes and so forth –something you would not normally do.

Spreading love to others can change the world. There is a knock-on effect that can change lives when we act through love and kindness. A very simple way to spread more happiness in your little world is through kindness. If we can all come together and do our small part each day in spreading love, peace, and unity; we can make the world a positive place for all of us to enjoy without much to worry about.

We need to use the resources and connections Life has blessed us with to open doors for those that were pushed away by society or underprivileged. We need to give a voice to the people that have no say. The world definitely needs more love and kindness and when we get the slightest opportunity, we should do the little we can for the world.

In conclusion, spreading love can give us a sense of fulfilment. Our eyes and hearts could light up after putting a smile on a person’s face. This valentine, do something different. Help someone. Be there for someone, spread love to the north, kindness to the south, compassion to the east, and goodness to the west. Spread love throughout the whole world.

Happy Valentine!

The Presence of Kings; BEYOND JUST AN EXPERIENCE

I belong to the school of thought that says “kings are made, not born” – and I mean this literally. One thing is to come from a royal family, making you an heir to everything regal, another thing is having the courage and leadership traits that comes with being a king, displaying that, pragmatically on all fronts. No wonder leading war battalions and fighting the actual war (the true characteristics of a king) is one of the responsibilities that comes with being a King from time immemorial, and quite frankly, I’m always astonished reading about the exploits of such accomplished kings some of which are; Melchizedek, David, Alexander the Great, Napoleon etc. Of a truth, I can say the same for a young boy who encountered his king and never remained the same.

“I’m so happy to meet a hero, a great Hero and a great man like you.” These were the words of a lad who was visited as a King passed by his hut on his way back from the battlefield.

It is an understatement to say he was starstruck because even in disbelief, the presence of the king awed him. You could tell that the contact meant everything to him – something like meeting your beacon of inspiration.

This boy’s momentary proximity to greatness spurred a thought that immediately translated like a flash of light giving him the courage that he could be a King too. These thoughts forced themselves through his mouth and he told the King, “I want to be like you when I grow up. Can I wear your crown?”

The king smiled, removed his crown, placed it fittingly on the boy’s head and said, “You can be like me, not necessarily a king due to traditions, but you can walk your own path, create your own legacy and build your own crown.” Beyond the silver and gold, the encounter with the king and his words were forever engraved in the boys heart, as they propelled his resolve to be a King or nothing.

In this present age, King & Kingship is figurative and always used in an allusion to greatness, power, wealth or influence. Whatever it is, the presence of a king in their allusions- such kind of visit in one’s life always end in many good things. Sometimes immediate, other times gradual.

The story of this boy is the story of every child that have been given a platform one way or the other to inspire and prove their kingship. This story is the story of The Brilliance & Purposeful Foundation.

About 2 years ago, we set out to inspire young minds in line with our mantra of brilliance, purpose and excellence. The maiden edition of our National Essay Competition held and hundreds of brilliant entries were received nationwide. The melting point of this for us was how much this meant to the winners and how the prestigious access they got in addition to the prizes are still a propelling factor for them till date.

One of the winners from Osun State, Akinlaja Christianah writes, “…The BPF contest allowed me to voice out my opinion on a controversial issue at the time. Besides, it also helped me to reshape and create a great mindset towards success as I got to meet people of high class and great personalities, such as the Deputy Governor of Osun State, the Honourable Commissioner for Education and the Special Adviser to the Osun State Governor on Education.” Same feeling of inspiration goes for her Lagos counterparts who were received by the Lagos State commissioner for Education.

Akinlaja Victoria with the Deputy Governor of the State of Osun.

At BPF, it is worthy of note that, we do not neglect or overlook the impact a King (Symbol of greatness, inspiration and excellence), would have in anyone’s life; especially young talents. We will continue building young and brilliant minds in line with our mission, thereby ensuring we give “the presence of the king” experience to as many as we can.

Join us, as we chart this course.

Happy New Month!