A new study from MIT's Sloan School of Management identified the eight most persuasive words you can use in meeting, with "yeah" being the top influencer. The word "meeting" itself even made the list.
TOP 8 WORDS TO BOOST PERSUASION
WHY THEY WORK
Yeah: Framing a suggestion as an agreement with a previous suggestion increases its chances of being accepted.
Give: Indicates a benefit to the group ("would give us a little bit of a marketing niche"). Could also indicate your suggestions are based on previous knowledge ("given speech recognition I think you should go for the less fancy chip").
Menu: No explanation why it's effective. The authors found the word is most often used in discussions about remote-controlled products.
Start: Gives group members the opportunity to agree, helping them feel productive.
Meeting: To move the meeting along, or used in place of a negative assessment of someone else's idea. "Maybe this is something for the next meeting."
Touch: Another word the authors found to be tied to the topic of remote controls. "So we put a touch pad on it."
Discuss: This word appears mainly in an organizational context for the meeting. "And then we can discuss some more closely." People tend to agree with organizational suggestions.
Find: Often used in suggestions to gather more information or do more work, and these are suggestions that are often accepted. "We have to find out if it's possible."
SAY SOMETHING NICE
Aside from the top words for persuasion, the authors suggested putting your compliments before criticisms, which will make your positive feedback seem more genuine.
11 MILLION MEETINGS
The study said approximately 11 million meetings are held each day in the U.S., so that's plenty of time to practice your persuasion.
Read the study in its entirety at http://arxiv.org/pdf/1306.1927v1.pdf