How To Relate To And Influence The Four Personality Styles

Sometimes we get on instantly with other people, occasionally there’s a clash. Changing your behaviour to suit different people is perfectly normal. It doesn’t change you as an individual, nor is it manipulative.

“What you are sounds so loudly in my ears that I cannot hear what you say”.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Influencing the Driver:

Present your ideas in ways that boost the person’s prestige. Genuine praise can work wonders. Use power words such as: best, biggest, unique, powerful, fast, money, first. Go for a decision, quickly and often.

Influencing the Analytical:

Like the Driver, this personality is strongly independent. Don’t rush things – plan to give the person plenty of breathing space and thinking time. If your suggestions stack up, the person will come round to your way of thinking. Putting everything in writing (along with lots of juicy statistics) can be good idea. Above all, don’t even think about misleading this type of person – it will be spotted instantly.

Power words that work well include: proof, evidence, facts and figures, research, logic, tired and tested, safe, reason.

Influencing the Amiable:

Amiables often have a long record of poor decisions. They are, therefore, suspicious and slow to accept new ideas. Take your time; nurture the relationship and work hard to gain their trust. Be prepared to provide ample proof and guarantees that your ideas will pay off.

Power words, that work well include: security, safety, guaranteed, reliable, popular, tried and tested, fail-safe, proven.

Influencing the Expressive:

Expressives like to be liked and appreciated. They need people around them and are anxious to develop and maintain relationships. Be prepared to steer and control the conversation.

Power words that work well include: fun, appreciate, enjoy, convenient, trouble-free, and inexpensive.


First of all it is important to recognise that, there is no best style. Merrill and Reid found that around 25% of the adult population belonged to each
Social Style. They also found people from each Social Style at all levels within organisations.

The third dimension and the key to using Social Styles is versatility. Statistically around a quarter of the population has a similar Social Style to yours and so you will find that you are naturally comfortable with them.
Some people are naturally very versatile and are able to adapt easily to the needs of other people; others are less so. By developing your versatility skills, you will be able to relate effectively with a greater number of people.

To learn more about Social Styles, please go here:
How To Identify And Use Your Social Style

Copyright © 2006 Jonathan Farrington. All rights reserved