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What is the best possible strategy to convince a stakeholder to adopt a new approach when they seem to hold on to a particular idea which is more generic. What I would like to hear are the best ways to systematically unfold the conversation to convince them when we know something works better.

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2 Answers 2

First, consider their point. Is doing something new really the right way to go? If it is then prepare to meet with them.

  1. Ask for a meeting. You will need their full attention. If you ask them when they are busy they will go with their gut which is what they always say.

  2. Prepare as much data as you can. Analytics, trends, numbers. They run on numbers. Support your claim with as much of this as you can. Show the lift it will generate. Show how it will translate in numbers.

  3. Compare. Show competitors. This is a little bit of a scare tactic but its needed sometimes. If they dont innovate they will be left in the dust.

  4. Contrast. Show the old/bad with the new/good. Side by side.

  5. Compromise. Give them some input that you will implement. They will be more willing to go with it when THEY had part of the idea or had to change something. Managers love that. In cases where I need to convince them I leave some blaring issue, ask them for help on this part, and have them give the solution.

  6. Talk about users pain points, wants, etc. Focus on why your UI UX solution solves these problems.

  7. End with a vision statement about pushing to the next level, numbers, and your passion for the project.

Hope that helps!

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  • Use their language instead of forcing your own (UX) terminology on them. Don't believe they understand you if you use UX terminology - they're quite likely to understand something, but more often than not, it's not at all what you meant.
  • Find out what exactly would benefit them if your approach were chosen.
  • Try to work out an approach together, as this might make it easier for the stakeholder to agree to it.
  • Be ready and willing to accept compromises - having only a part of your ideas realized still means you can point them out later on and follow up on your promises. This will build trust, and maybe next time they're ready to accept more.
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Nice answer, +1 –  Glen Lipka Apr 15 '11 at 14:24
    
Cheers Glen, much appreciated :-) –  Jan Apr 15 '11 at 14:25
    
Your words.."having only a part of your ideas realized still means you can point them out later on and follow up on your promises." makes sense, Thanks for the answer.:-) –  amarnath01 Apr 18 '11 at 4:35

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