Leadership lessons: Six steps to becoming a better influencer

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Paul Shrimpling outlines how to ethically exert your influence over clients and prospects.

Your influencing skills will determine your financial results and your quality of life, so how good are they? First of all, who do you want to influence and why?


  • Your team: Do they actually do what you want them to do?
  • Your customers and prospects: Do they buy what they need from you? Appreciate the value you provide? Happily pay prices that reflect the value you deliver?

It pays to get better at ethically influencing everyone around you more effectively.

The six tools of ethical influence

Robert Cialdini’s ‘Influence – the science and practice’ is a profoundly bri...

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About Paul Shrimpling

Paul Shrimpling

For 14 years Paul has worked exclusively with accountants in practice.

The last 9 years as MD of Remarkable Practice, a consulting practice, Paul has helped many firms achieve significant results:

  • A 3-partner firm adds £600,000 of net fees in 18months
  • A 9-partner firm adds £475,000 of cross sales in the first 12 months of working together
  • A 2-partner firm doubles profits in 3 years
  • A sole practitioner significantly improves profits but more importantly takes more holidays and enjoys the business of accountancy more than ever

Here’s what Laurie Riley, Managing Partner of a multi-owner firm in Shrewsbury, had to say recently about their first workshop with Paul:

“I’m not sure we have ever received such a positive reaction from the whole group, and what made it even more satisfying for me was that the ones we thought would be cynical, were anything but! A great achievement, which bodes well for the future.”


"You’ll find me either consulting with accountants to help them grow their firms or presenting to accountants for the same reason. A few times a year I present to business owners – on behalf of the firms I work with. I especially enjoy presenting the concept of the KPIs because it helps transform the results of any business. When I’m office based I do what I can to help the Remarkable Practice team develop and promote our products and services for accountants who want to grow."  
                                                                                                   Paul Shrimpling, Remarkable Practice

Creator of ‘Business Bitesize’ – cultivating a greater flow of new clients for your accountancy firm through profitable word-of-mouth –http://www.businessbitesize.com/ 

Author of ‘Bamboo Marketing For Accountants’ – the route map to marketing success for accountants in practice – http://www.bamboomarketingforaccountants.com/ 

And let’s get LinkedIn http://www.linkedin.com/in/paulshrimpling


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07th Aug 2010 14:24

Three More Influencing Tactics for Accountants

I agree, the book by Cialdini is a classic.

In addition to the six influencing tactics above from Cialdini's book, there are a quite a few more that are worth knowing about, such as:

1. Stories. 

People love stories, it's how we've passed on information for thousands of years.  If you can weave stories into your sales process, your key messages are more likely to be remembered and believed.  We all seem to be hard-wired to enjoy and believe a good story, rather than cold hard facts. 

2. Specificity.

Speaking of cold hard facts, the more specific your facts are, the more influential they are.  For example compare:

"We helped several companies increase their revenue in 2009."

"We helped 13 companies increase their revenue by an average of 24% in 2009"

So if you're providing facts, make them as specific as possible.

3. Emotion.

The old adage that people buy based on emotion and then justify with logic is spot on.  So try and understand the emotional drivers of your prospective customers in relation to your products or services.

In the broadest sense, emotional drivers fall into two categories:

- positive hopes and aspirations

- negative fears and anxieties

Try to understand what both might be and address them in your marketing & sales process.

Of course there are more influencing tactics, but begin by using Cialdini's six and the above three and you should see positive results. 

Hope this helps.


-- Robert Gowans, Professional Marketing Consultant

-> Get 87 of the strategies, tools & tactics I use to generate new business for my clients

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