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College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences


Tap the Power of Reciprocity

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By:Beth Flynn, Tuesday, December 01st, 2020

“There is no better way to initiate or strengthen a relationship of service than to give someone something they value. Ideally, this would be done with no intent other than to serve; it is about establishing a relationship entirely apart from a transaction. Depending on the circumstances, this could range from a sincere compliment, to sharing an idea or information or an appropriate gift.

Such kindness, without any ulterior motive or expectation, can incline people toward trust and engender a desire to reciprocate.

The power of reciprocity can be observed in our daily lives. It’s backed by scientific experimentation and evaluation. It has been validated in study after study. Robert Cialdini’s classic, Influence states: ‘The rule for reciprocation…says that we should try to repay, in kind, what another person has provided us…The rule possesses awesome strength, often producing a ‘yes’ response to a request that, except for an existing feeling of indebtedness, would surely have been refused.

Simply serving others in the small ways once known as ‘common courtesy’ can set the stage for effective persuasion (p. 249-250).”

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Tue, 12/01/2020 - 4:26pm -- Beth Flynn

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