Exam *INSERT name and section on page header* 6 – 8 pages, font size 10, double-spaced
NO APA References required Other book references not accepted
References/connections must be made to only from the 3 course textbooks and moodle notes.
The Pear Corporation currently sells consumer-based PCs/laptops and software services but will be switching in December 2025 to only providing software services. This is a significant development as it means a different direction and vision for the company, impacting staff and morale.
As a member of the public relations department, you are to develop a communications strategy for this project (complete turnaround from old to new form of company to be in two years), advising management on what to say to the company in essay, paragraph form with section headings.
Be sure to address the following:
Primary audiences (those impacted by the change)
Medium (best way to deliver message)
Communicator (best person to deliver message)
Principles of Persuasion
What is the best way to succeed in persuading
your listeners? There is no one “correct” answer,
but many experts have studied persuasion and
observed what works and what doesn’t. Social
psychologist Robert Cialdini1 offers us six
principles of persuasion that are powerful and
4. Commitment and consistency
You will find these principles both universal and
adaptable to a myriad of contexts and
environments. Recognizing when each principle
is in operation will allow you to leverage the
inherent social norms and expectations to your
advantage, and enhance your sales position.
Principle of Reciprocity
Reciprocity is the mutual expectation for
exchange of value or service. In all cultures,
when one person gives something, the receiver is
expected to reciprocate, even if only by saying
“thank you.” There is a moment when the giver
has power and influence over the receiver, and if
the exchange is dismissed as irrelevant by the
giver the moment is lost. In business this
principle has several applications. If you are in
customer service and go out of your way to meet
the customer’s need, you are appealing to the
principle of reciprocity with the knowledge that
all humans perceive the need to reciprocate—in
this case, by increasing the likelihood of making
a purchase from you because you were especially
helpful. Reciprocity builds trust and the
relationship develops, reinforcing everything
from personal to brand loyalty. By taking the
lead and giving, you build in a moment where
people will feel compelled from social norms
and customs to give back.
Principle of Scarcity
You want what you can’t have, and it’s
universal. People are naturally attracted to the
exclusive, the rare, the unusual, and the unique.
Cialdini, R. (1993). Influence. New York, NY:
If they are convinced that they need to act now
or it will disappear, they are motivated to action.
Scarcity is the perception of inadequate supply or
a limited resource. For a sales representative,
scarcity may be a key selling point—the
particular car, or theater tickets, or pair of shoes
you are considering may be sold to someone else
if you delay making a decision. By reminding
customers not only of what they stand to gain but
also of what they stand to lose, the representative
increases the chances that the customer will
make the shift from contemplation to action and
decide to close the sale.
Principle of Authority
Trust is central to the purchase decision. Whom
does a customer turn to? A salesperson may be
part of the process, but an endorsement by an
authority holds credibility that no one with a
vested interest can ever attain. Knowledge of a
product, field, trends in the field, and even
research can make a salesperson more effective
by the appeal to the principle of authority. It may
seem like extra work to educate your customers,
but you need to reveal your expertise to gain
credibility. We can borrow a measure of
credibility by relating what experts have
indicated about a product, service, market, or
trend, and our awareness of competing
viewpoints allows us insight that is valuable to
the customer. Reading the manual of a product is
not sufficient to gain expertise—you have to do
extra homework. The principal of authority
involves referencing experts and expertise.
Principle of Commitment and
Oral communication can be slippery in memory.
What we said at one moment or another, unless
recorded, can be hard to recall. Even a
handshake, once the symbol of agreement across
almost every culture, has lost some of its
symbolic meaning and social regard. In many
cultures, the written word holds special meaning.
If we write it down, or if we sign something, we
are more likely to follow through. By extension,
even if the customer won’t be writing anything
down, if you do so in front of them, it can appeal
to the principle of commitment and consistency
and bring the social norm of honoring one’s
word to bear at the moment of purchase.
Principle of Consensus
Testimonials, or first person reports on
experience with a product or service, can be
highly persuasive. People often look to each
other when making a purchase decision, and the
herd mentality is a powerful force across
humanity: if “everybody else” thinks this product
is great, it must be great. We often choose the
path of the herd, particularly when we lack
adequate information. Leverage testimonials
from clients to attract more clients by making
them part of your team. The principle of
consensus involves the tendency of the
individual to follow the lead of the group or
Principle of Liking
Safety is the twin of trust as a foundation
element for effective communication. If we feel
safe, we are more likely to interact and
communicate. We tend to be attracted to people
who communicate to us that they like us, and
who make us feel good about ourselves. Given a
choice, these are the people with whom we are
likely to associate. Physical attractiveness has
long been known to be persuasive, but similarity
is also quite effective. We are drawn to people
who are like us, or who we perceive ourselves to
be, and often make those judgments based on
external characteristics like dress, age, sex, race,
ethnicity, and perceptions of socioeconomic
status. The principle of liking involves the
perception of safety and belonging in
A persuasive message can succeed through the
principles of reciprocity, scarcity, authority,
commitment and consistency, consensus, and
1. Think of a real-life example of the
principle of scarcity being used in a
persuasive message. Were you the one
trying to persuade someone, or were
you the receiver of the scarcity
message? Was the message effective?
Discuss your thoughts with a classmate.
2. Do you think the principle of consensus
often works—are people often
persuaded to buy things because other
people own that item, or are going to
buy it? Are you susceptible to this kind
of persuasion? Think of some examples
and discuss them with classmates.
3. Do people always use reason to make
decisions? Support your opinion and
discuss it with classmates.
4. Make a list of five or six people you
choose to associate with—friends,
neighbors, and coworkers, for example.
Next to each person’s name, write the
characteristics you have in common
with that person. Do you find that the
principle of liking holds true in your
choice of associates? Why or why not?
Discuss your findings with your
Thinking you know
the other person’s
From The Brian Buffini Show
Episode 26: MASTERING
THE ART OF LISTENING
TO BECOME A
Response while the
other person is talking
Auto Telling your
story in response to
someone else’s story
Always putting the
Spotlight On Self
problems by saying
“don’t worry about that”
sentences for them
Me Me Me
to yourself no
Judging who’s right
or wrong without
recognizing that people
don’t always see the
world like you
Mr. Fix It
Trying to fix other
for them when they
haven’t asked you to
Brett & Kate McKay|January 26, 2011
Civic Skills,Manly Skills
Classical Rhetoric 101: The Five Canons of Rhetoric – Invention
Welcome back to our series on Classical Rhetoric. Today we’re kicking off a five-part segment on the Five Canons of Rhetoric. As you remember from our
to classical rhetoric, the Five Canons of Rhetoric constitute a system and guide on crafting powerful speeches and writing. It’s also a template by which to judge effective rhetoric. The Five Canons were brought together and organized by the Roman orator Cicero, in his treatise,De Inventione,written around 50 BC. 150 years later in 95 AD, the Roman rhetorician Quintilian explored the Five Canons in more depth in his landmark 12-volume textbook on rhetoric,Institutio Oratoria.His textbook, and consequently the Five Canons of Rhetoric, went on to become the backbone of rhetorical education well into the medieval period.
Enough with the history. What are the Five Canons of Rhetoric? Glad you asked.
The Five Canons of Rhetoric are:
· inventio(invention): The process of developing and refining your arguments.
· dispositio(arrangement): The process of arranging and organizing your arguments for maximum impact.
· elocutio(style): The process of determining how you present your arguments using figures of speech and other rhetorical techniques.
· memoria(memory): The process of learning and memorizing your speech so you can deliver it without the use of notes. Memory-work not only consisted of memorizing the words of a specific speech, but also storing up famous quotes, literary references, and other facts that could be used in impromptu speeches.
· actio(delivery): The process of practicing how you deliver your speech using gestures, pronunciation, and tone of voice.
If you’ve taken a public speaking class, you were probably taught a version of The Five Canons. They also form the foundation of many composition courses.
Over the next few weeks, we’ll be taking a look at each of the Five Canons separately and exploring how we use them in everyday situations to be more effective communicators. Ready, to get started? Let’s kick things off by talking about the first Canon of Rhetoric: Invention.
What Is Invention?
Invention, according to Aristotle, involves “discovering the best available means of persuasion.” It may sound simple, but Invention is possibly the most difficult phase in crafting a speech or piece of writing as it lays the groundwork for all the other phases; you must start from nothing to build the framework of your piece. During the Invention Phase, the goal is to brainstorm ideas on what you’re going to say and how you’re going to say it in order to maximize persuasion. Any good orator or writer will tell you they probably spend more time in the Invention step than they do any of the others.
Take Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. Yeah, the man is polarizing and a lightning rod for controversy, but lawyers and jurists across the political spectrum recognize him as one of the best legal writers in the history of the Supreme Court. He’s able to take complex issues and arguments and distill them into short, powerful, and often witty sentences and paragraphs. Even if you don’t agree with the outcome of his opinions, you’re often left thinking, “Damn, that was a really good argument!”
What’s the secret to Justice Scalia’s rhetorical ability? Spending lots and lots of time in the Invention Phase. In an interview about his writing process, Scalia explained that he goes through “a lengthy germination process” for ideas before he puts pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard). Scalia brainstorms in his car while driving home from work and at the gym while exercising. This germination process lasts anywhere from a few days to even a few weeks.But the time invested in simply thinking and brainstorming pays off when he finally gets down to writing. I find this to be the case in my own life as well; my best posts are those which I allow to percolate in my brain for a long time, months, even years. I’m kicking around ideas when I’m brushing my teeth and taking a walk. When I finally sit down to write, the ideas come tumbling out, already nicely aged and seasoned.
Things to Consider in the Invention Phase
So what sorts of things should you be thinking about during the Invention Phase? Without some direction and guidance, brainstorming can often be fruitless and frustrating. Pondering the following elements can increase the effectiveness of your Invention sessions.
Your audience.One of the key factors in crafting a persuasive piece of rhetoric is tailoring your message to your specific audience. Find out to the best of your ability the overall demographics and cultural background of your audience. What does your audience fear? What are their desires? What are their needs? This information will help you decide what sorts of facts to incorporate into your rhetoric as well as help you determine which means of persuasion would be the most effective to employ.
Your evidence.When planning your speech or writing, collect any and every type of evidence you can find. Evidence could be facts, statistics, laws, and individual testimonies. It’s always good to have a nice blend, but remember different audiences are persuaded by different types of evidence. Some people need cold, hard facts and statistics in order to be persuaded. Others find the testimony of peers or a reputable authority to be more convincing. Part of getting to know your audience is figuring out what kinds of evidence they will find most credible and compelling.
The means of persuasion.You remember the three means of persuasion, right? Pathos, logos, and ethos? This is the time when you want to determine which of the three persuasive appeals you’ll use in your speech. Ideally, you’d have a nice mixture of all three, but again, different audiences will be better persuaded by different appeals. Usingpathos(appeal to emotion) to convince a room full of scientists that you have discovered cold fusion probably won’t get you very far. A focus onlogoswould work much better. Again, it’s all about suiting your rhetoric to your audience.
Timing.People are receptive to certain ideas at different times depending on context. People often advise couples not to go to bed angry, to work out their problems before hitting the sack. But at night we’re tired and cranky; our defenses are down. Trying to convey your side of things at this time frequently results in a small issue blowing up into something much bigger. On the other hand, a good night’s sleep often helps put things in perspective. You’ll likely find your spouse more willing to hear you out in the morning. As it is in marriage, so it is with everything in life; the importance of timing cannot be underestimated. Present a cost-cutting idea at work the same day five of everyone’s favorite employees were laid off, and you’ll get a icy, hostile reception. Present it six months later and people will actually listen.
Another aspect of timing is the duration of your speech or writing. In some instances a long, well-developed, and nuanced speech is appropriate; other times, a shorter, and more forceful presentation will be more effective. Again, it often depends on your audience and the context of your speech.
Abraham Lincoln was a master of timing. His Gettysburg Address is one of the most famous speeches in history. Many people don’t know that Lincoln actuallywasn’tthe keynote speaker that day; rather, that honor fell to renowned orator, Edward Everett. Everett delivered a two hour speech that displayed some of the finest skill in oration and rhetoric; he held the audience in rapt attention. Lincoln took to the stand anddelivered his address in less than five minutes. While the contemporary audience was not overly impressed, Everett knew he had been witness to greatness. He wrote Lincoln, “I should be glad if I could flatter myself that I came as near to the central idea of the occasion, in two hours, as you did in two minutes.” And of course, 150 years later, no one quotes Everett or even remembers he spoke at Gettysburg, but everyone remembers Lincoln and are familiar with his words. Timing matters.
Format of argument.So you have a vague idea of what you’re supposed to write or talk about. The hard part is taking that vague idea and organizing it into a concrete theme or thesis. Without some guidance on how to do this, a man can rack his brain for hours and not get anywhere. Fortunately for us, the ancient rhetoricians left us some nifty little cheat sheets on developing the format and theme for our arguments, which is where we turn next.
Ancient Helps for the Invention Phase
Stasis.Stasis is a procedure designed to help a rhetorician develop and clarify the main points of his argument. Stasis consists of four types of questions a speaker asks himself. They are:
1. Questions of fact:What is it exactly that I’m talking about? Is it a person? An idea? A problem? Does it really exist? What’s the source of the problem? Are there facts to support the truth of this opinion?
2. Questions of definition: What’s the best way to define this idea/object/action? What are the different parts? Can it be grouped with similar ideas/objects/actions?
3. Questions of quality:Is it good or bad? Is it right or wrong? Is it frivolous or important?
4. Questions of procedure/jurisdiction:Is this the right venue to discuss this topic? What actions do I want my reader/listener to take?
These questions may sound completely elementary, but trust me, when you’re struggling to get your mind around an idea for a speech or writing theme, stasis has an almost magical way of focusing your thinking and helping you develop your argument. Don’t skip out on it.
Topoi(Topics of Invention).
Topoi,or topics, consist of a set of categories that are designed to help a writer or speaker find relationships among ideas, which in turn helps organize his thoughts into a solid argument. Aristotle organized the different rhetorical topics in his treatiseThe Art of Rhetoric. He divided the topics into two large categories: common and special. We’ll focus on common topics as they’re more general and applicable to every day rhetorical situations. (If you’d like more info on special topics see
.) Below, I’ve listed a few of the common topics that are especially helpful in forming arguments.
· Definition.My classics professor crammed it into my head that in any rhetorical debate, definitions are vital. Whoever can dictate and control the meaning of a word or idea, will typically win. Politicians know this and spend a lot of energy working to frame and define the debate in their own terms and with their own spin. The topic of definition requires an author to determine how he would classify the idea, what its substance is, and to what degree it has that substance.
· Comparison.You’re probably familiar with this one from your middle school days when you had to write compare and contrast essays. It’s a great way to explore and organize. But the real power of comparison lies in its ability to help you develop powerful analogies and metaphors that stick with your audience.
· Cause and Effect.Perhaps you’re in a city hall meeting arguing against a new ordinance that requires restaurants to display nutrition information on all their food. You could use cause and effect as an effective way to persuade your listeners that it’s not a good idea. Using strong, factual evidence, present some of the possible detrimental effects of implementing the ordinance. (i.e. expensive for businesses, extra costs to city government to regulate, etc.)
· Circumstance.This topic looks at what is possible or impossible based on circumstances. With the topic of circumstance, you can also attempt to draw conclusions on future facts or events by referring to events in the past. “I know the sun will rise tomorrow because it has risen every day for thousands of years,” is a very simple example of the topic of circumstance in action.
Stasis and the topoi are just starting points in helping you organize your thoughts and arguments.
That does it for today. I hope you learned something you could apply in your own life. Next, time we’ll be discussing the canon of arrangement.
Classical Rhetoric 101 Series
A Brief History
The Three Means of Persuasion
The Five Canons of Rhetoric – Invention
The Five Canons of Rhetoric – Arrangement
The Five Canons of Rhetoric – Style
The Five Canons of Rhetoric – Memory
The Five Canons of Rhetoric – Delivery
Bonus! 35 Greatest Speeches in History
Last updated:December 17, 2015
Top of Form
6 Rules of Leadership Networking
Networking isn’t a ploy for getting your way.
If you earn a reputation as someone who takes but doesn’t give, who uses information inappropriately, or who breaks confidences, your networks will shut down.
Having resources such as information, services, and access will build your leadership network through give and take.
Reciprocity is important.
Become skilled at resource bartering, know your assets, and share them appropriately.
Use power thoughtfully.
Power is the ability to get things done.
You’ll need 3 sources of power to build your network: your reputation, your alliances, and your position.
Be the leader who gets results, can be held accountable, and has connections with key influencers or decision-makers.
Use your power wisely.
Communicate in a way that builds awareness of your needs and your assets.
If you can’t make others aware of what you can offer and what you need in order to accomplish goals, your networking strategies will be ineffective.
Be a savvy negotiator.
Effective negotiators know when to push hard and when to back off,
when to share information and when to hold back, when to swap resources, and when to trade short-term outcomes for a long-term goal.
Avoid playing hardball and avoid being viewed as a pushover.
Learn to manage conflict.
Learn skills for resolving conflict.
When conflict occurs within your network, try to appreciate the opposing view.
Look for points of mutual agreement.
Express your position in a way that’s helpful to resolving the conflict.
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